Rockingham Pleasantly Planned

After my disappointment with Lake Richmond, my expectations were not very high for Renegade Path – a pond a little to the West of Lake Richmond.

What a difference… I was impressed for the rest of the day with the work put in by Rockingham Council to create a pleasantly planned city, making the most of features that were present.

I haven’t seen the figures, but I suspect that the water table must be just a few feet below ground level, so it is easy to provide water features and lots of green growth.

Renegade Path pond, W. AustraliaAt a guess, I would think this simple water feature has added tens of thousands of dollars to the value of the surrounding houses.

A glance at the fleecy clouds convinced me that it wasn’t going to rain, so with my GPS tablet in hand, I set out to walk to a little fresh food store someone told me about.

Median strip garden island highway, Rockingham, W. AustraliaYou wouldn’t guess from the photograph that it shows the median strip between the two halves of  Garden Island Highway. I thought the planners had left the median strip like that because they had to allow for the stream.

city of Perth, W. AustraliaBut further down the highway where it changed it’s name to Ray Road, I discovered my mistake. The stream had moved to the South side of the highway, but every effort was being made to improve the median strip. You can see evidence of planting and caring for new trees.

The pleasant planning is even visible from space. If you search Google Earth for Garden Island Hwy, Rockingham and increase the magnification, you can see the broad green strips around the highway.

Steeple near Ray Road, Rockingham, W. AustraliaIf you magnify it even more, you can see the pedestrian/cycle way paths in some places. In others, pedestrians can still walk along the grassy strips beside the streams.

I saw this unusual steeple near Ray Rd, but unfortunately, I can’t remember the nearest road junction to it.

In the foreground you can see a blackboy plant, which the political correctness police have renamed a “grass tree”. A mature tree has a trunk blackened by fire, with the grass skirt hanging down and flower spike looking like a spear, so early settlers thought it looked like a black boy with a spear, standing on one leg.

As you can see, the weather forecast for heavy rain continued to be false.

After an hour or two walking through lovely footpaths that encouraged pedestrian activity, my trusty GPS brought me to the shop. It was certainly eye-catching.

Fresh essentials shop, W. AustraliaThe fruit and vegetables in the photo were outside the shop, so people must be fairly honest in that area. Inside, as promised, there was a section with organic foodstuffs.

A kind lady asked me if I was alright, walking around in bare feet, so I reassured her and asked where the organic food was.

There were avocados for 50 cents – not organic, but I don’t eat the skins and hope that agricultural sprays don’t penetrate to the inside.

Read Street greenery, Rockingham, W. AustraliaFor a bit of variety, I decided to walk home up Read St.

I continued to be impressed with the planning. If you use Google Earth to measure the distance across the road in this picture it is about 100 yards between houses. Notice the footpath to the right of a green strip, and the green median strip, with the tiny cars showing on the other side of the road.

Crossroads Read St & Ray Road, Rockingham, W. Australia At this point I measured the distance between houses facing each other across Read St as 434 yards or nearly half a kilometer.

Notice the generous provision for pedestrians at the crossroads, and the extensive green strip at the left. Oh yes. We drive on the left in Australia.

After that I just walked home along the stream from the main shopping center, that I had walked the day before, and took the dog for a walk around the lake, feeling just a little bit tired.

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