South Australia

Plans to transform Adelaide's laneways and activate city

SOUTH Australian Premier Jay Weatherill has announced plans to transform the laneways of Adelaide's CBD as part of a move to revitalise and regenerate the CBD.

Mr Weatherill recently chaired his first meeting of the Capital City Committee as Premier and last week announced an agenda to enliven the city, with the State Government and Adelaide City Council each providing $100,000 for pilot projects.

The Capital City Committee has agreed to moves including:

  • Activating side streets, laneways and spaces between buildings;
  • Finding new uses for vacant buildings, including heritage buildings;
  • Reducing red tape to help new enterprise flourish in the CBD;
  • Flexible planning regimes for the city centre;
  • Promoting shared use roads; and
  • Increasing the population living in the city.

The Committee will target a priority zone, bounded by North Terrace, West Terrace, Currie Street, Grenfell Street and Pulteney Street, and connect it to the new Royal Adelaide Hospital and Riverbank area.

Mr Weatherill said it makes sense to act on the long-held ideas for activating the city's laneways, adding that they currently act as little more than pedestrian shortcuts or service alleys.

A multi-agency group, headed by Deputy Premier and Planning Minister John Rau and incorporating input from the Adelaide City Council and relevant industry bodies, will identify laneways and areas of the city which are suitable for transformation and develop a strategy for implementing this.

The group will also identify areas for action such as possible changes to licensing laws, food regulation issues and urban design matters.

Mr Weatherill said activity to regenerate the city is already underway along North Terrace, the Riverbank and Rundle Mall.

The Capital City Committee was established under the City of Adelaide Act 1998 to provide a forum for the State Government and Adelaide City Council to consider, discuss and oversee shared priorities for the development of Adelaide.

The Committee, which meets at least four times a year, includes Premier Jay Weatherill, Deputy Premier and Minister for Planning, John Rau, Transport and Infrastructure Minister Patrick Conlon, Lord Mayor Stephen Yarwood, Deputy Lord Mayor David Plumridge and Councillor, Dr Michael Llewellyn-Smith. It meets at least four times a year.

"We must revitalise our city so that it is a place for all of us and grasp the opportunity to bring it to life in a way that capitalises on work already underway or in the pipeline," Mr Weatherill said.

Also last week, Adelaide City Council proposed a notional figure of $30 million over the next three years to kick start the detailed design of initial works of the Rundle Mall Masterplan. The amount would be factored into the Council's budget process from 2012/13 and beyond, subject to public consultation.

In addition, the Council is seeking $10 million from a combination of State Government and private investor contributions over the same period.
Lord Mayor Stephen Yarwood said the Council is committed to ensuring Rundle Mall remains the primary retail precinct and meeting place in SA.

"The City of Adelaide is evolving - from the redevelopment of Adelaide Oval, the Riverbank precinct, and our plans for Rundle Mall - the vibrancy of the CBD is going to be at a level not seen here before," Cr Yarwood said.

"We are bringing about the most significant changes to the Mall since its creation."

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