Junction Place, Wodonga
- ASPECT Studios
- City of Wodonga
- Places Victoria
- Andrew Lloyd (Photographer)
As one of regional Australia’s largest urban renewal projects, the 10 hectare ‘Junction Place’ is a collaboration between Places Victoria, the City of Wodonga and Regional Development Victoria which aims to inject new life into central Wodonga.
Centred on the decommissioned historic Wodonga railway station, Junction Place will progressively transform the site into a vibrant mix of spaces and precincts to service its surrounding communities.
On completion of these works Places Victoria General Manager – Mr Simon Wilson and City of Wodonga Mayor Cr Anna Speedie reiterated that the city now has a heart from which it can expand from.
Planning and delivering an Urban Precinct – using public realm to refine its urban planning, increasing the flexibility required to deliver the project’s economic objectives, facilitating heritage buildings/fabric retention, and shaping street networks and three main public spaces, being:
• ‘Junction Square’ interfacing with High and Elgin Streets to complete the civic prioritisation of this intersection.
• ‘The Promenade’ following the former railway line to create a pedestrian link defined by the historic railway buildings.
• The future Green Square/Richardson Park.
Although in the early stages of development, Junction Place is already home to a number of food and beverage operators. Places Victoria is currently working to drive investment and create opportunities for the private sector. This is in response to predictions that Wodonga’s population will increase by 40% over the next 20 years.
• ‘Scarpa’ esque interrogation of site bluestone for station access elements, establishing a pop-up cafe precinct as a precursor to a vibrant cultural and gastronomic hub.
• Reusing on-site materials for temporary activation of the heritage station entry landscape as an outdoor cinema/café.
Delivering a precinct centred on Place Making Principles, identifying desired community activities and events that would gain economic support in the Wodonga region, including:
• An urban promenade for local produce markets and community events.
• A grass square for flexible use and everyday use.
• Adaptive reissue of railway gantries for urban shade structures.
Creating quick wins to commence activating and embracing the space: repurposing of railway gantry lights into a public lighting project (before main works commenced).
Design concepts sophisticated in protecting, integrating, reusing and interpreting the heritage buildings and fabric including:
• Working with Places Victoria/CoW commercial development teams on briefs to repurpose the historic buildings.
• Contributing to enabling works for their refurbishment and accessibility.
• Reusing materials in the public spaces, interpretation signage and built elements.
Council’s Landscape Architects refined and delivered the first two public open spaces, a testament to the collaborative approach undertaken between consultant and council through the design phase.
‘Junction Square’ and ‘The Promenade’ now provide many opportunities, from quiet reflection and social interaction to outdoor public events and retail opportunities that locals have embraced.
As a community, Wodonga will build upon these evolving spaces to enhance city pride and financial return, thus continuing to draw people to the City.