Construction has begun on a large, waterfront park within Melbourne’s Fishermans Bend precinct. The public park will eventually form part of the much-anticipated Fishermans Bend urban renewal project.

The 8,000-square-metre park – designed by Hayball and Tract Consultants – forms part of the 491-hectare transformation of Fishermans Bend, which has been called Australia’s most significant urban renewal project.

Estimated to cost $19 million, the new park will occupy a site on Buckhurst Street and sit opposite a five-storey vertical primary school, which is currently under construction. The school was also designed by Hayball and Tract Consultants.

The development of the park has been planned across several stages. The first of these includes the creation of grass areas, seating, lighting, trees, footpaths and basic amenities, and is anticipated for completion in mid-2018. This will be followed by consultation with the local community to determine what other amenities are required.

According to the Fishermans Bend Vision – a planning document released in September 2016 by the Melbourne and Port Phillip councils in collaboration – the overall project sets out to have open space that is within 200-metres walking distance for all residents and workers.

"[The park] will be the ideal place for families to get together and enjoy their new-look community, and [for] local students to blow off some steam after a day in the classroom," planning minister Richard Wynne told The Age.

Over the next 35 years, Fishermans Bend is expected to be home to approximately 80,000 residents. In March, the completion of Fishermans Bend’s first building – a 29-storey residential tower designed by Plus Architecture – marked a milestone for the precinct.