Next steps in protecting Newcastle's cultural heritage

02 Nov 2023

The community is invited to help guide future heritage planning as the city continues to undergo significant revitalisation by identifying which streets, buildings and places contribute most to Newcastle's cultural identity.

City of Newcastle (CN) has undertaken a comprehensive review of its existing Newcastle City Centre and Newcastle East heritage conservation areas (HCA) with the draft report findings to be publicly exhibited, following endorsement by the elected Council at Tuesday's Ordinary Council Meeting.

The report outlines the current planning context, assesses the appropriateness of boundaries, and identifies items that contribute to or detract from each heritage conservation area in the city centre.

Newcastle Lord Mayor Nuatali Nelmes said it is essential to review and update the conservation management strategies, policies, and planning framework for these areas to ensure their heritage value is understood and protected for future generations.

"The buildings, streets, and precincts of these two HCAs have experienced significant change brought about by the recent economic revitalisation of Newcastle City Centre," Cr Nelmes said.

"Recommendations outlined in the report incorporate an analysis of feedback made during early community engagement to better understand what people feel contributes to Newcastle's heritage significance and cultural identity.

"The review found residents living within the two HCAs generally want to maintain and conserve the special character of these areas. The community also identified several distinct character areas for protection and conservation, particularly in the Newcastle City Centre HCA."

The methodology used in the report is based on NSW Heritage criteria and is consistent with City of Newcastle's commitment to heritage conservation under its Heritage Strategy and Heritage Policy.

"Following public exhibition, further community and industry feedback will be used to help investigate how and where land use protections for these areas could best be applied for continued revitalisation of the Newcastle City Centre while ensuring our rich and diverse cultural heritage remains protected and conserved," Cr Nelmes said.

The draft Newcastle City Centre Heritage Conservation Areas Review Report will go on public exhibition from Monday 6 November to seek community and industry feedback, with a report going back to the elected Council following the exhibition period.

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