Macquarie University, Internal Infrastructure Project

Macquarie University, Internal Infrastructure Project

Client: Macquarie University – Internal Infrastructure Project
Location: X8 Car park, Macquarie University, Sydney, Australia
Product: Grass Reinforcement Mesh Standard 2m x 20m
Application: 7500sqm of Reinforced Grass Parking

The Brief

The University required an interim car park (life span up to 10 years) when a former multi-deck car park structure was re-developed as a building project. The design contract called for a surface capable of parking vehicles and buses which would minimise water runoff. Stormwater management was a key issue for the project’s Design consultants and NSW Office of Water.

The Solution

Grass Reinforcement Mesh, a long lasting extruded polyethylene mesh made from 20% recyclable material was the chosen grass reinforcement at the Macquarie University X8 car park.

Excavation work was required for creating opened water runoff channels and swales. Due to the gentle gradient of the grassed location, site preparation was minimal. The Grass Reinforcement Mesh was rolled onto existing Kikuyu grass and pinned to the ground. As the grass grew through Grass Reinforcement Mesh, it created a naturalised finish delivering an aesthetically pleasing result that blends in as though a part of the university’s green space.

The oscillated design and UV stabilised construction easily catered for the 30+ weeks X8 car park would be in use throughout the year. Grass Reinforcement Mesh can accommodate up to 6 tonnes per axle (imposed load), meeting the traffic bearing requirements of the site.

An establishment period of 4 weeks was permitted on site prior to any traffic using the car park. This allowed the grass to grow and intertwine between the mesh apertures of the Grass Reinforcement Mesh. Vigorous grass species such as Kikuyu and Buffalo are well suited to this application.

Stormwater management was critical as water runoff disperses into a local creek. X8 car park design is integrated with open grass drainage channels, swale reinforcement and a biofilter detention basin to treat runoff. The open mesh design of Grass Reinforcement Mesh complemented the stormwater objectives as it allows and promotes water infiltration to the soil.

Conclusion

The X8 Facility was operational by Semester 1, 2011. Post installation maintenance is a monthly mow at a cut length of 50mm. Over the following 2.5 years since installation Grass Reinforcement Mesh has been considered by Macquarie University to be a resilient surface treatment for grassed parking spaces and a good solution to their car space requirements.