About Civic Hall Site

The FIVE (5) new urban design concepts will be launched Saturday, 14th November 2015, 10am-4pm at a family friendly, outdoor exhibition, on the roof of the library carpark, corner Armstrong & Market Sts.

The concept boards will then be on display at the Ballarat Library from 23rd November onwards, and return to the Open Door Studio for viewing in December. The Ballarat Council will consider the concepts in a meeting in December.

Meanwhile, here's some background to the Civic Hall Site - Participatory Community Design Process: Back in August 2014, following a lengthy history of indecision regarding the future of 300 Mair Street, the Ballarat City Council unanimously voted to sponsor a genuine community orientated "participation process" for the whole site. Over 7.5 acres in extent, this city block includes the 1956 Civic Hall, the Ballarat Library, the skatepark, the carpark and nature strips.

Council made a commitment to this new concept design process, aiming to directly involve local people, organizations, business and visitors in architectural design, decision-making and activation. Here Studio was appointed as the project and process manager.

By October 2014 the series of doors at the front of Civic Hall reopened. Since that time the main foyer has been open for public access and over 1400 people have come in and shared their thoughts on what should happen with the site. Approximately 2000 people have attended specific test events and onsite activities. Previous plans and designs created in prior years, as well as previous public discussions, have also informed the body of knowledge under review by Here Studio.

The architects at Here Studio busily synthesized all of the 300 or more ideas to settle upon 10 distinctive architectural and urban design concepts for the community's further consideration. The second phase of the participatory design process commenced Friday, 1st May 2015, with the 'Transition Exhibition.' These ten urban design concepts were on display through until 22nd October.

The focus was on which concepts garnered the greatest response, but also which elements within the various concepts gain the greatest support. The most popular elements have been reassembled and narrowed down to create 5 new concepts.