4 March 2019

Revamped Woden Town Square the shape of things to come

| Ian Bushnell
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The new-look Woden Town Square aims to be a place where people will want to be. Photos: Ian Bushnell.

A transformed Woden Town Square will be opened to the public on Wednesday (6 March) when the new upgrades featuring picnic settings, activity and event spaces, and play opportunities will be ready for use.

The six-month Woden Experiment is part of an overall plan to make the ACT’s public spaces more attractive and interesting.

Minister for City Services Chris Steel said the project was a genuine experiment. “If the installations work we’ll make them permanent, if not we’ll go back to the drawing board,” he said.

Mr Steel said the Government hoped that the upgrades to the square would attract more people to use what is a challenging and often windy space.

“The ACT Government is also upgrading public spaces in other Town Centres but the Woden Experiment is important because following an evaluation of the project’s impact it will help inform a new place making guide to be used for other projects in Canberra,” he said.

The new square features furniture suitable for gatherings, irrigated and artificial grass, a nature play space, two workshop and community hubs with smart benches and stage space for activities and performances.

“This isn’t just a physical installation, there will be a program of activities and events to taking place during the next six months utilising the new stage area,” Mr Steel said.

Woden Community Service has been contracted to promote the space and bring community activities into the square and is the first point of call for booking the space for events and activities.

If you would like to book the space for an event or activity contact WCS at: wodenexperiment@wcs.org.au

There are still opportunities for organisations, groups and individuals to register their ideas and availability for activities and events during the Experiment. For more information on the Woden Experiment and to register, visit www.yoursay.act.gov.au.

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michael quirk1:50 pm 11 Mar 19

Has anything be done to reduce wind in the square? This has been the main problem for decades.

Robert Issell5:25 pm 07 Mar 19

We’ll call this a slap on the back, well done! I visited this site yesterday as a member of the Woden Valley Community Council and President of the Phillip Business Community and I was very pleased with what I saw in an area that had been neglected for far too long.
Mum’s and Dad’s and their children where already making use of the equipment and enjoying the adventure obstacles. As were several others of all ages who took time to lounge on the chairs and enjoy the greenery now provided in this space.
The centre piece – the stage provides for Community Entertainment, so it will be great to hear music and the sounds of laughter at lunch time and weekends in the Town Square – a space that has been desolate for far too long.
The riot-act has provided a great story on the launch of the new look Town Square as have the ABC providing live broadcast from the site yesterday.
Thank you for the interest shown by Minister Chris Steel and his team in supporting this and many other community projects.
A setting like this would also be well received in the dry and dusty parks located in the Phillip Trades and Services District where the courts of Colbee and Dundas have been crying out for some attention just like this for a long time.

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