The City of Sydney is looking to give its laneways and forgotten spaces a much needed refresh, as part of the council’s post-pandemic recovery measures for the harbour city.
Sydney Lord Mayor, Clover Moore, says the laneways revitalisation plan will assist in bringing people back to the city, creating a lively and engaging city centre.
“We’re giving a new lease of life to forgotten spaces in the centre of Sydney to welcome people back into the city when it’s safe to do so, and support local businesses that have been devastated by the ongoing pandemic,” she says.
“Now that work has finished on the light rail project, we can get to work on completing our vision for a city that is people focused and business friendly, drawing together city workers, residents, visitors, entertainers, artists and the hospitality sector.
“The need to accommodate physical distancing while encouraging a return to the city centre makes the latest steps in our laneways revitalisation program an ideal investment in our city’s future.”
The council has identified 10 future priority projects for revitalisation that will occur over the next 10 years, starting in 2022. The laneways that will be revitalised are as follows.
Between George Street and Parker Lane, Barlow Street is currently home to a temporary artwork by the artist collective Dirt Witches, which was installed in January 2021. The artwork and alfresco activation program was enacted to encourage and support a return to the city centre after the 2020 lockdown. The small banksia forest has received overwhelming support from the public with a number of requests asking to retain a permanent closure.
The extension of the George Street pedestrianisation south to Central station provides an ideal opportunity to create a permanent landscape installation in the western section of Barlow Street.
St Laurence Lane
With a new light rail stop in Rawson Place at the end of the laneway, upgrade works to St Laurence Lane and improved lighting will provide opportunities for local business and encourage people to explore the area on foot.
Curtin Place, Hamilton and Little Hunter streets
Part of the laneway running off George Street has recently been upgraded and converted to a shared zone as part of the development at 280 George Street. Together with Hamilton and Little Hunter streets, it forms a laneway network and pedestrian connections between George and Pitt streets.
Randle Lane, York Lane and Wynyard Lane
These inner-city laneways have been earmarked for revitalisation once redevelopment works around Wynyard railway station and the construction of the new Metro station at Central are complete.
Randle Lane runs next to the new Metro pedestrian portal on the eastern side of Central station and will have high pedestrian traffic in the area, while York and Wynyard lanes are next to the upgraded development at Wynyard station.
These lanes are an opportunity to create new connections for people walking in the city centre and new opportunities for local businesses.
Underwood and Dalley streets
Located in the Quay West Quarter, development and revitalisation of these small streets will support public domain improvements throughout the precinct.
The laneways and public domain upgrades will be completed by the City of Sydney in stages and coordinated with major developments and domain upgrades.
The program of priority laneways to guide the City’s Laneways Revitalisation Program was unanimously endorsed by Council on Monday 20 September.