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New boardwalk, visitor centre proposed for Botanic Garden

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A raised boardwalk down an avenue of Moreton Bay figs, new glasshouses and visitor centres and a bridge across the Main Lake are part of a proposed new Adelaide Botanic Garden masterplan released for public feedback.

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The plan, released this morning, outlines several new infrastructure upgrades, including improved pathways, signage and public toilets to ensure that the city’s 167-year-old Botanic Garden continues to provide “memorable, lasting and relevant experiences for local, national and international visitors”.

It includes a proposed elevated boardwalk down “Ficus Walk” – a row of Moreton Bay figs first planted in 1866 – to better protect for the trees’ roots, as well as the installation of a bridge across the Main Lake to extend the Garden’s primary north-south thoroughfare.

Other suggested improvements include building a “teaching glasshouse” with a food, health and wellbeing focus next to the kitchen garden, and readapting the Francis Arbour structure (originally the “Rustic Temple” museum) to create a new “entrance hub” with possible shop connecting the Garden to Lot Fourteen.

Heritage building restoration is also proposed, as well as new sustainable water management systems.

The proposed site changes for the Adelaide Botanic Garden. Image: Botanic Gardens and State Herbarium

Botanic Gardens and State Herbarium board chair Judy Potter said the suggested changes aimed to improve the visitor experience.

“The plans are about ensuring all future investment is done within a framework that adds to the experience of all users, ensures the sustainability of the gardens and protects the valuable botanical, cultural and architectural heritage within,” she said.

“At the same time, we want to give visitors an exceptional experience, and integrate with the Lot Fourteen global innovation precinct, and the cultural hub along North Terrace.”

The public has until Thursday November 12 to view the full plans and submit feedback via the State Government’s Your Say website.

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