Beaufort Street will get a new place to sit and relax after the City of Vincent approved the new Mary Street Piazza on Tuesday night. Vincent will now appoint contractors to complete the job and hopefully the piazza can be ready by Festival time (November 2015). Here is an image of what it will look like –
What’s In it For Me?
Benefits for Local Businesses
- Provides another reason to come to and stay around Beaufort Street. Other areas (such as Northbridge, Leederville and Maylands) are improving, so Beaufort Street needs to progress in order to compete as a destination
- Highly likely to attract more pedestrian traffic past local businesses, which would likely lead to higher sales
- Provides a new experience and adds to the Beaufort Street ‘vibe’
- Provides a new place to relax and enjoy a drink or food from local businesses
- Improves streetscape, adds trees and greenery
- There were no noticeable parking issues during the two week trial period
Benefits for Local Residents (particularly for residents of Mary Street)
- Less traffic driving down Mary Street (as entry from Beaufort Street is removed)
- Slower traffic speeds on Mary Street (as roadway has been narrowed)
- Encourages people to walk and cycle to Beaufort Street (rather than drive)
- New public space to relax and meet friends
- Improves the streetscape and amenity, adds trees and greenery
- People using the space would provide more ‘eyes on the street’ reducing possibilities for anti-social behaviour in the area
Creating Places for People
The Mary Street Piazza will implement the recommendations of the Better Beaufort Action Plan, particularly:
- Principle 1 of the Action Plan is to “Create a great place for people of all ages”. Attracting people is the key to creating a great place and supporting local businesses. We need to attract more people, particularly on weekdays, which are currently quiet times for the street.
- Principle 2 is to “Promote a greener, safer and more comfortable street”. People are attracted to spaces that feel comfortable, welcoming and safe.
“If a modern city wants lively streets and a vibrant public realm, it has to provide public space as a fundamental prerequisite. As today’s citizens have more options on how to spend their time, they will only spend it in the public realm if it is of high quality and accessibility is easy and convenient.” ‘Perth 2009: Public Spaces, Public Life’ Gehl Architects
The Mary Street Piazza will be a great public space for people and benefit the local area for decades to come. The Network appreciates the City of Vincent’s strong leadership in placemaking and creating better places for its local community.
We Already Know It Can Work
The piazza was trialled between 25 July and 8 August 2014. The purpose of the trial was to provide an opportunity for people to see what could be done in the space and assess things like traffic and parking impacts.
The community feedback was fantastic with 87% of the 300 submissions supporting a new public space for Beaufort Street. Here’s some pictures from the piazza trial.