Streets as shared spaces

Article image - Streets as shared spaces Kogarah pop-up park.

Georges River Council recently received grant funding to activate and increase the vibrancy of the Kogarah and Hurstville central business districts. 

Under the New South Wales Department of Planning, Industry and Environment (DPIE)’s Streets as Shared Spaces program, a pop-up park has been installed in the Kogarah Town Square until January, creating an urban oasis in the heart of the town centre. 

Kogarah Town Square and surrounds are transformed into a relaxing space for workers and patrons to linger and engage in the public realm. 

Colourful street furniture has been installed along with creative lighting activating the area into a better quality public space both during the day and into the night. 

The temporary changes will allow Council to experiment with more permanent public domain elements. 

At nearby Post Office Lane, public art will be installed to increase pedestrian amenity in the high foot traffic zone, and the former Kogarah Civic Centre will host additional public art and colourful lighting. 

In Hurstville, the focus will be on improving the functionality, safety and placemaking potential of Forest Road by adapting its layout and design to increase space for safe movement. 

Parklets will be installed in areas with high pedestrian activity, offering additional seating, traffic calming measures, increased greenery and public art installations. 

The long term vision for Hurstville is to transform Forest Road into a green, shared space where people are given priority and low volume vehicle movements are slow. 

Council is progressing draft concept designs as part of a broader Hurstville Revitalisation project. 

A recent survey by the DPIE shows a dramatic increase in activity in public spaces and local neighbourhoods, with 85 percent of people using their neighbourhood streets more and 45 percent spending more time in public places compared with pre-COVID-19 restrictions. 

This highlights the importance of Council creating vibrant local centres and urban environments people can enjoy.