Concept C: Raised Landscape
This concept envisages a raised public landscape covering almost the entirety of the Civic Hall Site with extensive development, storage, and car parking underneath. The proposal accommodates all key preferences for the site: iconic and extensive public open spaces in the CBD, reactivation and improvement of the Main Hall, multiple private development opportunities, Government offices, and an expanded Central Library.
The Central Library is extended upwards to provide a focal point on the North-West corner, and a major mixed-use development is proposed on the North-East corner that combines employment spaces and sustainable inner-city living spaces. The long edges of the site, Doveton and Armstrong Streets, are activated with pedestrian-scale mixed-use shop-top developments, offering protection to the public open spaces and opening the front to a long civic plaza along Mair Street. Various spaces for hire are spread across the site, including an adapted Lower Hall – with new East entrance, and the addition of structures above the East aisle of the Main Hall. An extension above the West aisle allows improved seating for large events.
Concept C suggests that significant landscape design could be used to imagine an iconic green destination for Ballarat that covers and connects building uses and provides pedestrian access from front to the back of the site.