The Harding Street bridge is a timber suspension-style bridge over Merri Creek. It opened in 1985 and features a 1.2-metre-wide timber deck that spans approximately 77 metres. The bridge provides an attractive place to watch the creek. Its also provides an important link in the network of walking and bike riding paths in Coburg and Preston.

As more people discover the joys or walking, cycling, and immersing themselves in nature, there is a greater push for bridge improvements. The current width of the existing bridge has been identified by users as too narrow as it is difficult for users to comfortably pass one another. Both Merri-bek City Council and Darebin City Council have raised concern over safety issues and potential user conflicts experienced on the existing bridge.

In June 2020 we hired a consultant to do a feasibility study of the bridge. The study determined that the existing bridge should be replaced. In March we held drop-in sessions to hear community members’ feedback about the concept design. A summary of this feedback is in the Document Library

Following the completion of the Feasibility Study, the following project aspects have already been decided upon and will be pursued in the Detailed Design stage:

  • The new bridge will feature a truss style design
  • The sides of the new bridge will be 3 meters high
  • The new bridge will be realigned on the Western end
  • The new bridge will feature an improvement of the dog-leg bend on the Eastern end

Currently, we are working with the design consultants to confirm aspects of the bridge which are yet to be decided. These are listed below:

  • The width of the bridge deck
  • The colour of the bridge
  • The path connection from Harding Street to the new bridge

The new bridge will be a vast improvement to the pedestrian and cyclist network and will open the door for future projects in its vicinity. These include:

  • Upgrading the informal path along the Merri Creek Trail on the Western side linking to the new bridge
  • Public lighting improvements around the new bridge

Quick Poll

What width should the new bridge be?

This poll has concluded.

17% (76 votes)
15% (68 votes)
68% (309 votes)
Total Votes: 453

What colour should the bridge be painted?

The following colour schemes were suggested in the feasibility report. Vote for your favourite.

If you prefer another colour, tell us in the comments section below.

Green and Brown Black and Grey Steel (natural)

This poll has concluded.

Green and Brown
55% (249 votes)
Black and Grey
20% (90 votes)
Steel (Natural)
19% (87 votes)
Some other colour combination
6% (29 votes)
Total Votes: 455

What do you think of the design?

As a bridge user, you understand how this bridge is part of the Merri Creek parkland, the shared trail network, and a transport network for walkers and bike riders linking Coburg and Preston. Post your ideas below.You might like to consider:
  • If you didn't like the colour schemes above, tell us what colours the bridge ought to be - or show us by uploading a colour swatch.
  • Are there changes that Merri-bek City Council can make on the West bank, or that Darebin City Council can make on the East bank that might make the bridge and its surrounds a better place?
  • How can we make the bridge work better as a transport link?

What we've heard so far

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