We have cancelled the exciting public workshop that we were planning for the end of the month, and we are investigating other online forms of workshopping our ideas for the future of the North Sydney city centre.
Our positive, constructive approach to the future of the North Sydney city centre is expressed in “five big ideas”. We think it is possible, now, to create a grand civic space in front of the proposed tower above the Victoria Cross metro station at Miller and Berry.
All it takes — if Lendlease wants to contribute to the city centre instead of exploit it, and if the North Sydney Council is more flexible and strategic about public space — is that the two parking lanes in Miller Street are converted to people space, leaving two lanes of traffic (i) for essential buses and taxis (this is, after all, the public transport epicentre of the city), (ii) for service and delivery vehicles (at off-peak times) and (iii) for access to existing office loading bays and parking garages. Instead, the Council wants to remove not only the parking lanes but all vehicles. That’s not possible, and primarily disadvantages users of public transport and taxis.
Another element of our strategy is to calm the Pacific Highway. We recognise that it is part of the ‘ring of arterial roads’ that we have focused on — see ‘News in March’. Turning the Pacific Highway into an attractive and lively city boulevard has many elements, but an obvious goal is to civilise the vast area of bitumen and conflicting movements that is the five-way intersection called Victoria Cross. The diagram shows that half of that trafficked bitumen could be spaces for people and planting.