Civic and State Square Masterplan Launched – Creating a Cooler, Greener, More Attractive CBD

The TerritoryLabor Government today launched the Civic and State Square Masterplan, whichmaps out how the city centre will be revitalised and transformed into aworld-class tourist and cultural destination.

The StateSquare overhaul is a critical part of the historic $200 million City Deal,delivered in partnership with the Australian Government and City of Darwin.

As part of thedeal, Darwins Civic and State Square precinct will be revitalised to createcool, green spaces for the whole community including families, friends andtourists to enjoy through activated spaces, events and public gatherings.

Enablingprojects such as the underground car park have already commenced, to unlockgreen spaces with the removal of four heat generating above ground car parks.

The Masterplanhas been developed in consultation with the local community and businesses toprovide a map of areas for revitalisation, investment and upgrades in order toestablish a thriving, beating heart in the CBD through greater connectivity.

Taylor CullityLethlean Limited, in partnership with local award winning firm, TroppoArchitects, Hully Liveris Design Com Pty Ltd, and Irwin Consult EngineeringConsultants designed the Masterplan.

Key features ofthe Masterplan include:

  • Large,flexible shaded lawns creating opportunities and added space for large scaleconcerts and events up to 7000 people;
  • Asignature Art Gallery featuring a Grand Verandah will be locatednext to the Central Heart, showcasing the Territorys art collections,significant national and international travelling exhibitions, furtheractivating the cultural space.
  • Anexpressive Central Heart, featuring a large sculptural shade structure inspiredby the vortex of a cyclone pattern;
  • ABillabong Garden adjacent to the proposed Art Gallery site, displaying plantsof the humid environment of the Territory;
  • Alively caf space, as well as ample room for displays, pop-ups and stalls;
  • Anextensive, interactive water-feature drawing crowds through the theatre ofwater play, and a chance to cool down, with playful seating reminiscent of theunfurling of cycad and fern fronds of the tropical North;
  • Atnight-time, an atmospheric star-like lighting reminiscent of the Top Ends bignight skies;
  • Aplayful water wall when illuminated becomes a canvas for interpreting Darwinand the Territorys living history;
  • Pedestrianfocused tropical walks and generous sheltered walkways throughout; and
  • Shadedand sculptural gardens across key infrastructure including white trunkedEucalypts, Sand Palms and Cycads, as well as Porcellanite Stone providing abackdrop for Aboriginal Sculptural works and Territory Artists.

The Masterplanwill be delivered in stages, with work set to start this year on a lush,cool garden above the State Square Underground Car Park that is nearingcompletion.

Communityfeedback on how the new spaces can be used is now invited through theexhibition at the Activate Darwin Hub inSmith Street Mall.

Theredevelopment of Civic and State Square will be delivered in partnership with theNorthern Territory Government and the City of Darwin. The Darwin City Deal willalso see the establishment of a Charles Darwin University campus and studentaccommodation in the CBD bringing in around 1000 students to the city centre.

The firststage of the Masterplan works will commence in late 2019.

As stated bythe Minister for Infrastructure, Planning and Logistics, Eva Lawler:

Now theMasterplan has been launched the redevelopment of Civic and State Square willprovide more opportunities for local businesses to be involved and create localjobs in our community.

The Masterplanwas created in consultation with more than 30 key community and localgovernment stakeholders to gain their aspirations and ideas about the space andit builds on the current work our Government is doing at the State SquareUnderground Car Park, Austin Lane, Cavenagh Street and Garramilla Boulevard.

Our City willbecome a tropical, green, cool and shaded relaxing oasis that will provide aspacious place for events, festivals, gatherings and displays.

As stated bythe Member for Port Darwin, Paul Kirby:

Every greatcity has a lively and activated city centre, and the Civic and State SquareMasterplan is a stunning representation of our citys great potential.

This landmarkinitiative will be a key driver in revitalising our CBD and making it a muchloved destination for visitors, attracting new residents and encouragingbroader investment. This is also a boost to local business and a boost forlocal jobs.

The Masterplancelebrates our rich history, and aims to tell the stories of the landscapesthat transcends into a public space designed to be highly memorable,rejuvenating and ever changing for our community and visitors.

As stated byCity of Darwin, Lord Mayor Kon Vatskalis:

The Civic and State Square Masterplanreflects our unique history, culture and lifestyle and establishes a beautifulgreen heart in Darwin City.

Incorporating an Art Gallery, multi-purposeoutdoor spaces, water features and lush tropical landscaping, the Masterplan isa stunning vision for Darwin that is cool and green, vibrant and creative, andattractive place to gather for visitors and locals alike.

The Masterplan is a testament to a positivecollaboration between City of Darwin, the NT Government, traditional owners andthe best architects in Australia.

As stated byTaylor Cullity Lethlean Pty Ltd Company Director, Kate Cullity:

The Civic andState Square is the type of project we love – aproject with an inspirational brief and extensive stakeholderconsultation with the opportunity to collaborate with local architects, artistsand other professionals to create an activated and lively public spacethat is emblematic of the relaxed Darwin and NT lifestyle!

The Masterplan builds on the City CBD Masterplanand the heat mitigation studies to create a diverse array of spaces that draw amyriad of locals and tourists to the site night and day, through the seasons. The existing green and cool park atmosphere is amplified with thecreation of a series of tropical gardens, cooling and expressivewater-features, shelters and walkways inspired by the rich living history andlocal landscape.

As stated byTroppo Architects NT, Director Jo Best:

The master plan presents a new vision forDarwins inner-city, where community and governance spaces share a(single) curated landscape. The plan delivers a reimagined democratic centre for the tropicalnorth which revels in our widely-envied climate and welcomes a diversity ofusers. We look to build on these characteristics by strengthening connectionsbetween the CBD and the Waterfront and providing world-class destinationsamong iconic landscape and built features that provideyear-round outdoor event and family spaces.

Thepedestrianisation of Smith St and expanded green space provides our existingbuildings of governance their due spatial reverence, extends vistas, andprovides an opportunity for the city to be cooled by implementing sensiblepassive strategies. An interpretive overlay tells our collective story to theworld and is supported by integrated servicing and structures, making Darwin adrawcard to visitors, and a high-quality host local, national and internationalevents.

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