The award-winning MacKenzie Falls Gorge Trail project was an innovative design intervention that used a back-to-basics approach. The Landscape Architecture design delivers a bold design solution for one of Australia’s largest waterfalls, located within the Grampians National Park, Victoria. The project stemmed from the preparation of a concept plan for the MacKenzie Falls Precinct under their flood recovery program after floods caused the destruction of a key footbridge in early 2012.
The design includes a realignment of the MacKenzie Falls Trail Path and locally manufactured expanded mesh footbridge crossings. The new trail provides a more integrated user experience setting up dramatic spatial sequences that better connect people to the landscape.
We gave careful consideration was given to the material choice to ensure climate change resilience and sustainable building practices. Local rock was sourced directly from site for the construction of steps and paths.Each rock was positioned by hand due to the difficult terrain and the inaccessibility of machinery. The mild steel used for the expanded mesh footbridges were fabricated by local companies and installed by local tradesmen. Their presence in the landscape is better integrated with the natural surroundings and contributes to its sense of thus forming an strong identity.
This project was undertaken during my time at hansen partnership pty ltdwhere I worked as a Senior Landscape Architect. MacKenzie Falls has been awarded a 2014 AILA Design Award, the 2014 AILA People’s Choice Award, a 2015 Good Design Award for Architectural Design: Urban Design and Public Spaces, and a 2016 AILA National Award of Excellence.