KENDALL & HARDING STREETS, PRESTON/COBURG - MELBOURNEFORMATION AND TERRACE
LOCATION: YARRA 5000/04.09 E22000 N20225 TO N20260
Cliff on left bank of Merri Creek below Kendall Street and broad terrace on right bank north of Harding Street. The site is immediately upstream of the pedestrian suspension bridge linking Kendall and Harding Streets.
ACCESS: Merri Path and Kendall and Harding Streets.
OWNERSHIP & MUNICIPALITY: Public Land, City of Preston (left bank) and City of Coburg (right bank). Part of the right bank site is under private lease for a market garden.
SITE DESCRIPTION: The left bank site is a cliff of Silurian Melbourne Formation sedimentary rock. This cliff marks the western edge of a broad ridge of Silurian rock that forms the divide between the Merri Creek and Darebin Creek in Northcote and Preston. This ridge was high enough to escape burial by the basalt of the Newer Volcanics lava flows that came down the adjacent creek valleys. Tongues of basalt penetrated up small gullies or tributary valleys on the side of this ridge and remain as erosion outliers isolated on the lower slopes of the ridge. One such isolated block (obscured by roads and buildings) occurs on Kendall Street. As the Merri Creek cut a new valley at the edge of the lava flows, steep cliffs developed (below Kendall Street) on the outer edge of an incised meander where the creek was confined between the lava flows and the ridge of sedimentary rock. On the inner edge of the meander, a gently sloping terrace covered by a veneer of alluvium has developed. The gentle terrain and alluvial soil forms the basis for the market garden north of Harding Street. These soils are examples of the very dark "cricket pitch" soils of the Merri Creek area.
SIGNIFICANCE RATING: LOCAL
The site is an example of the complex of processes that have produced cliffs and terraces along much of the Merri Creek. The Kendall Street outcrop is one of the more extensive natural exposures of Silurian rock in the Merri Creek valley in the Metropolitan area.
SITE SENSITIVITY, THREATS, POTENTIAL UTILISATION
CLASS 3. The cliffs are not accessible and can be adequately viewed from the opposite bank from the Merri Path. They are considerably obscured by vegetation but removal or pruning of this is probably not warranted given the low significance of the site. The retention of the Harding Street market garden is compatible with retaining the geomorphological significance of the Harding Street terrace.
Melbourne and Suburbs, Australia 1959 [map] 1:31,680e Geol. Surv. Vic. Sunbury, Australia 1973 [map] 1:63,360: Geol. Surv. Vic. (Part of 7822 Zone 55)
Photograph 17 Cliff of Melbourne Formation at Site 11.
Photograph 18 Alluvial terrace at Site 11