Students unveil their ideas to revitalise city

Launceston youngster Heath Ackerly, 14 months, enjoys playing with giant chess pieces in Civic Square, as part of a City Heart Project ideas display. Picture: NEIL RICHARDSON

Launceston youngster Heath Ackerly, 14 months, enjoys playing with giant chess pieces in Civic Square, as part of a City Heart Project ideas display. Picture: NEIL RICHARDSON

LAUNCESTON’S Civic Square was transformed yesterday when students from the University of Tasmania’s School of Architecture and Design unveiled their ideas to revitalise the city’s CBD.

Bean bags, a giant chess board, and other prototype chill-out facilities were on show as part of early input for the Launceston City Council’s City Heart Project.

Launceston Mayor Albert van Zetten, who was on hand to talk with students about their ideas, said he was looking forward to seeing the feedback from the rest of the community.

‘‘We want to get as much feedback from the public as possible – that’s what it’s all about – now is the time to get in and have a say,’’ Alderman van Zetten said.

‘‘Anyone who has got ideas and thoughts we want to hear them because we’ll put it all together and hopefully in the next few years some of this will be rolled out and you’ll see some exciting changes in the city.’’

Launceston City Heart project manager Damien Fitzgerald said Civic Square was one of the key spaces the council wished to revitilise.

‘‘Civic Square is quite cold and uninviting so we want to introduce some elements that improve the space so people can use it throughout the year and we also want to make it flexible so we can hold events throughout the winter periods,’’ Mr Fitzgerald.

Mr Fitzgerald said he was impressed that students were ‘‘thinking outside the square’’.

‘‘We wanted to involve the School of Architecture and Design in terms of prototyping so we’ve come up with the most talked about concepts and then the prototyping is an abstract way of showing the community how you can activate the space,’’ he said.

University of Tasmania’s School of Architecture and Design lecturer Sanaz Hosseinabadi and student Emma Radin said they were excited about the City Heart Project.

People can see students’ prototyping in action in Civic Square today from 9am to 2.30pm and in the Brisbane Street Mall tomorrow from 10am to 3pm.

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