Beautification projects breathe new life into New Lambton shopping precinct
City of Newcastle is adding a dash of greenery and a splash of colour throughout New Lambton's shopping precinct with the installation of shopfront “smart” gardens and a vibrant four-metre-high community mural.
The projects are being supported through City of Newcastle's Special Business Rate (SBR) program following an expression of interest process in consultation with the local business community.
Lord Mayor Nuatali Nelmes said local businesses in New Lambton are set to directly benefit from the beautification projects, which will enhance the appeal of the precinct.
"The input of business owners to activate their precincts is vital to creating thriving business communities and increasing visitation to suburban areas like New Lambton," Cr Nelmes said.
“As a result of the latest suburban SBR round, the creative projects selected for New Lambton are set to enhance the precinct for residents and visitors, making it an even better place to eat, drink and shop."
Nine local businesses have seen their facades turn green with the installation of vertical “smart” gardening systems by Herb Urban, whilst a black cockatoo is the hero of a four-metre-high community mural underway on the exterior of New Lambton Library, which is being delivered by Up&Up Inspirations with the help of Lambton High School students.
Business owner Kathy Slevin from clothing boutique Kate Devine said customers are noticing the recent addition of the vertical gardens on her store's façade in Alma Street.
“I've received a lot of positive comments from customers who are noticing, stopping, commenting and appreciating the installations,” Ms Slevin said.
“Customers are appreciating the fact that the added greenery softens the concrete façade and lots of other local businesses are wanting them installed on their shop fronts. They’ve been a positive addition and good for business and the precinct.”
Popular coffee haunt, Chaddies on Regent, is located in the courtyard overlooking the New Lambton Library community mural. Café owner Jo Grace said the mural was already creating a lot of interest.
"It's really exciting seeing the mural take shape. It's going to inject so much colour and our customers get to benefit from viewing a beautifully designed mural rather than look at a plain brick wall," Ms Grace said.
Sharon Lance, from fashion retailer Papango, said the mural is creating a buzz and will bring new life to the courtyard precinct once it's complete.
"The mural is just so happy and colourful with its bold use of lavender and orange, but the real star of the show is the black cockatoo, who frequents our deciduous tree here in the courtyard and can be found nearby in Blackbutt Reserve."
Special Business Rates are collected from businesses in Newcastle City Centre / Darby Street, Hamilton, Mayfield, New Lambton and Wallsend for the promotion, beautification and development of those precincts.