24 July 2019

Contract awarded for West Basin redevelopment design

| Ian Bushnell
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A future West Basin as depicted in a render from the tender document.

A company that has already delivered or is delivering five planning and design projects to the ACT Government has been selected to realise the City Renewal Authority’s vision for the controversial West Basin area on Lake Burley Griffin.

National architectural and planning firm Hames Sharley has been awarded a $453,000 contract to design the redevelopment of West Basin as a residential, business and recreational precinct.

Hames Sharley has been responsible for the design of major residential, commercial, university and sporting projects across the country including the redevelopment of the Adelaide Oval.

In Canberra, its work includes the Moncreiff East Estate Development Plan, Greenway Precinct Master Plan, and Molonglo Valley Stage 2, residential and urban development.

The Authority has already flagged the building of 2000 apartments as part of a major reshaping of West Basin into a waterfront community connected to the city, and tender documents describe the area as ‘unique’ in terms of Government revenue opportunities.

The documents say Hames Sharley will be required to deliver a place plan, spatial master plan and urban design framework, that will contribute to the West Basin Review being led by Indesco Pty Limited, with which it will work in tandem with.

The place plan will identify West Basin as a desirable waterside community with places to live, work and play.

Unoccupied buildings on the site from previous businesses such as boat and bike hire will be demolished, and about 2.86 hectares of lake bed will be reclaimed to create a lake edge and support development of the proposed waterfront promenade.

The project will require an overhaul of road networks, including Parkes Way, and have to take into account plans for light rail Stage 2 to Woden, or at least 2A as the first section from the City to Commonwealth Park is now known after the Government decided to split the project into sections north and south of the lake.

Hames Sharley will have to consider the lowering of Parkes Way, a connecting road with London Circuit, a pedestrian path from Marcus Clarke Street, and any proposed land bridges.

Residential options should include social, affordable and public housing, and the design team will consider building density, sustainability, transport and parking, streetscapes, commercial and retail opportunities, and community facilities.

But the Lake Burley Griffin Guardians remain concerned that the Government is looking to maximise residential development at the expense of open space and that the environment will be destroyed in the process.

They say that the area can be revitalised without high density development.

The National Capital Authority will have to approve any redevelopment.


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andrebluegiant10:57 pm 29 Jul 19

How do you get from driving on Commonwealth Av to Parkes Way?!

How dare they look at changing the foreshore of our man made lake with development.

Its outrageous, the car parks should be heritage listed i tells ya.

Serious questions – what did the ACT government do for revenue before they started selling land? And what do they currently exist for, other than to sell land? Are they an elected government or a real estate agency?

Why has it become so accepted in this territory that we must have open spaces and public housing sold off to private developers? What do we want for this city, now and for the future?

We still need an ACT ICAC. A real one. And a viable alternative to Labor.

I will give you two hints.

One this issue is not unique to Canberra, it is an issue all over Australia. Why the population is growing and people need to be accommodated. In the past that mean more and more urban sprawl but finally people have woken up to the fact that that is not sustainable to have 700m2 blocks of land with one or two people living on them.

As for what the ACT government did for money in the past, simple the feds put more into the place but they have been slowly taking that out.

Which means the economy in Canberra needs to diversify which in turn means we need more people, go back to first paragraph.

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