Hunter Streeet Mall Photo credit: Google maps
Wikipedia defines placemaking as “a multi-faceted approach to the planning, design and management of public spaces. Placemaking capitalizes on a local community’s assets, inspiration, and potential, ultimately creating good public spaces that promote people’s health, happiness, and well being. Placemaking is both a process and a philosophy.”
One of the strategies for Newcastle’s development is placemaking, this was announced at the Jan Gehl lecture that was recently held by Newcastle Now. There are already a number of areas of Newcastle that have developed into “places”, and there are many more with the potential to develop into lovely places for people to sit or to wander, looking at interesting artwork, shops or parks.
Bikes, of course, lend themselves to promoting placemaking, they are a calm, easy and flexible mode of transport compared to both public transport and to cars. A trip down Hunter Street, a very long street for a city centre, reveals many such “places” which are already there …
Pacific Park: Photo credit: Google maps
There are many more such places in this part of the city: small cafes down pretty laneways, murals, arty businesses and old shops, waiting to be refurbished. Bike lanes in this part of town will make all of this accessible in a far more effective way than travelling there by car would. This initiative will be an exciting one to see unfold.