Januburu Aboriginal Engagement
Januburu [Lit: our country] LandCorp’s Januburu Six Seasons is a bench mark residential development in the Kimberley. Minyirr Park is a significant place for the Yawuru creation story. Januburu’s subdivisional design recognises this significance by connecting Minyirr to the residential hinterland with an Environmental Cultural Corridor. The subdivision premise reflects ‘Country’ and the indigenous six seasons through the subdivision and landscape design including themes that integrate indigenous education, traditional storey-telling and endemic vegetation. Place and street names are from the local language.
To achieve successful outcomes for all parties, experience suggests that engagement with Aboriginal people involves the building of trust, the balance of planning principles and cultural practices and the interaction that takes place between different cultures. Interaction can include the use of language and terminology, flexibility in approach, use of practical techniques, pictures and aerials, time for reflection and discussion. Cross cultural differencescan be addressed by the use of discrete eye contact, listening, allowing time for response, appreciating long pauses and body language.
- Prior to design, a round table meeting sought the custodians’ input
- Continuous monthly meetings
- Placement of a wide Environmental Cultural Corridor and swale drainage through the development (as derived from the 1997 Town Planning for Aboriginal Culture project)
- Determining the width of the ECC on site with the custodians
- Identifying tree clusters with the custodians for further internal open space;
- Placing road structures in response to environmental conditions;
- Confirming design outcomes with the custodians’ planner
- Finalising designs
- Handing over title of neighbouring land
- Offering contributions from sales of land