Anyone using the Cotter Road underpass to access Equestrian Park over the last few years would be aware that the banks of Yarralumla Creek have been steadily eroding to the extent that an entire concrete retaining wall has fallen into the waterway. As part of the Commonwealth funded Healthy Waterways Project it has been planned for some time to undertake remediation and stabilisation in the stretch of Yarralumla Creek from McCulloch Street to the weir near the showjumping arena in Equestrian Park. Work, including the repair of heavily eroded banks, the construction of rock riffles, weed control, landscaping and the construction of a short maintenance access track, began on the stretch of Creek south of the Cotter Road last year. There is some more information about these works at https://www.environment.act.gov.au/water/act-healthy-waterways/healthy-waterways/sites-and-progress/waterway-restoration-curtin-upper-molonglo-catchment
Stabilisation of the Creek within Equestrian Park has taken longer to get off the ground because of issues with the tricky design of the proposed stabilisation and the need to consult with the local indigenous custodians. The area covered by the competition grounds was once a marsh where local people hunted and cooked eel and there are recorded artefacts across the Park. The National Capital Authority has now given works approval and preparatory work has started on the northern side of the Cotter Road.
One of the first actions will be to temporarily move the gate over among the poplars to make room for work on the bank of the Creek. Some of the trees currently clinging precariously to the bank will have to go as well. Guideline, the contracted engineers, will be working from the eastern bank and in the Creek itself installing very large concrete blocks against the bank. The large yellow bulldozer in the Creek south of the Cotter Road is sure to migrate north. Guideline have said they will not be working on Saturdays or Sundays. Once they start in earnest, however, it will be a good idea to keep an eye out for updates on the Equestrian Park Facebook.