Four standout public works you need to know about

Projects that shape cities and neighbourhoods and realise the health, social and economic benefits of greener public spaces have been celebrated by a panel of expert judges.

A streetscape that successfully balances pedestrian and vehicular use, the rejuvenation of a town centre inspired by its heritage, and a play space that transformed an under-utilised space are among the government projects recognised in the 2018 South Australian Landscape Architecture Awards.

The awards by the Australian Institute of Landscape Architects (AILA), presented in late July, recognise projects across 10 categories including civic landscape, infrastructure, play spaces, and parks and open spaces.

A ‘decluttered’ streetscape

Bank Street is the first stage of the Market to Riverbank Precinct upgrade.

The provision of a streetscape that strikes an effective balance between pedestrians, cyclists and vehicles won the City of Adelaide and Renewal SA a civic landscape prize for the Bank Street Upgrade.

The project is the first stage of the overall Market to Riverbank Precinct upgrade which aims to strengthen the pedestrian link for 15,000 locals and tourists on a daily basis.

The judges recognised the project’s effective “decluttered” approach using local materials including strategically placed seats, art, smart lights and greening to heighten the opportunity for social interaction and outdoor dining.

“The success of the transformation is the result of the City of Adelaide’s and Renewal SA’s focused collaboration with stakeholders and local businesses, as well as the construction team to minimise the impact to businesses during the works,” the judges said.

Town renewal  

The Willunga Mainstreet Project used local art works.

The City of Onkaparinga was recognised in the cultural heritage category for its Willunga Mainstreet Project which the judges said “transformed the town centre into a beautifully crafted setting that evokes Willunga’s natural history, local stories, settlement past and contemporary future.”

The project, by WAX Design, used locally sourced Willunga slate for paving, seating walls and stormwater drains, which was hand-crafted by local artisans.

Play space transforms park

Mukanthi Nature Play space used an under-utilised part of the park.

In the play spaces category, the Department of Environment Water and Natural Resources was recognised for the Mukanthi Nature Play space.

The project, by Peter Semple landscape architects and Climbing Tree Creations in collaboration with indigenous artist Allan Sumner, transformed an under-utilised part of the Morialta Conservation Park into a significant community facility that encourages physical activity and exploration.

“The approach by Peter Semple Landscape Architects and Climbing Tree to integrate the new facility seamlessly into the existing site, and to celebrate and legitimise the existing natural play experiences, encourages broader exploration and a greater connection with place,” the judges said.

Clever wetlands project

City of Marion’s Oaklands Park & Wetland.

The City of Marion’s Oaklands Park & Wetland was recognised in the parks and open space category for developing an “important community asset.”

A key element of the project by TCL is the constant flow wetland and aquifer storage and recovery that captures, cleans and supplies water for the greening of 30 other open spaces, which would otherwise have been lost.

“TCL capitalised on this, strategically locating different uses around the wetland, determining the interface between water and land, providing multiple ways to interact with the water’s edge,” the judges said.

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