End of the line for Noble Park board

South Eastern Metropolitan MP Lee Tarlamis with the NP Beats crew - one of the 44 projects funded by the Noble Park Revitalisation Board.

by Cam Lucadou-Wells

Funding for Noble Park’s suburban revitalisation program has been scrapped in the May State Budget.

Noble Park Suburban Revitalisation Board chair Lee Tarlamis however hopes to maintain the “transformative” collaboration beyond its final meeting on 23 May.

Since 2020, the board has endorsed more than $4 million towards a long list of 44 projects of a total value of 9 million-plus.

These have included streetscape and playground works and events like the Noble Park Community Fun Day and Noble Park Big Day Out.

Public art, an AMES community garden, youth activities and community centre upgrades have also been funded.

“The key thing is when this board was established, it wasn’t intended to be an ongoing entity,” says Mr Tarlamis – also a Labor MP for the South-Eastern Metropolitan Region.

“From the outset I made it clear that I don’t know if we’ll get funding next year. So we needed to build resilience and partnerships beyond the life of the board.

“Money was one aspect of it but bringing people and the community together was just as important.”

He was confident that the relationships will stick.

Among the collaborators are Greater Dandenong Council, Reclink, South East Local Learning and Employment Network (SELLEN), Noble Park Community Centre and South East Community Links (SECL).

“My intention is to keep the board going for the next 12 months even in an informal capacity.

“It’s been a really good model. We’d look at rolling out this model to other areas.

“I want to thank the partners and collaborators on the board who gave up so much of their time. Their passion was so evident.”

Mr Tarlamis said the initiative had been “transformative for Noble Park”.

“When you see the precinct there’s a lot more people out and about with that sense of community ownership and community pride.

“We have more people active and wanting to participate fully in the community. That also means people’s perception of safety will be enhanced as well.

“The next step is how do we get people to utilise these community spaces more.”

Projects will also continue over the next year, such as public artwork through the Bunurong Land Council, shade at Frank Street Open Space, a Melbourne City Football Club leadership program with high school students and a laptop rollout to disadvantaged students.

According to a Greater Dandenong Council report, the council will also look at possibly forming an advisory committee until 31 December.

The “locally-led projects” had “improved liveability and opportunities for local communities to come together”, the council report stated.

“Importantly, the Board has championed collaborative work in place, across all tiers of government, local service providers and business.”