James Street Plaza, Hamilton
At Council's meeting of 27 February 2018 it was resolved to develop a James Street Plaza Masterplan in consultation with Hamilton Business Improvement Association (BIA).
The Hamilton Townscape Study dated 1991 included the original design for the Plaza which closed the James Street roadway at Beaumont Street to create a community meeting area and multi-use space.
The increasing under-utilisation of the Plaza and concerns over public safety identified the need to review the site and develop a Masterplan. The drivers included anti-social and criminal behaviour related to the Telstra phone box and public toilets and the Plaza's infrastructure which requires renewal. There is strong support from Hamilton BIA for an upgrade.
City of Newcastle has undertaken a community placemaking process including a series of engagement activities as detailed in this diagram (pdf 2.2MB). This resulted in the development of two concepts which were publicly exhibited from 26 November 2019 to 13 January 2020.
The outcome of the community engagement with the preferred option was presented to a Councillor Workshop on 11 February 2020. The decision was made to finalise the James Street Plaza Masterplan using the concept option 2 Modern Town Square Masterplan (pdf 1.56MB).
Detailed design of the James Street Plaza Masterplan will commence in the 2020/21 financial year with construction to follow. Further community engagement will be undertaken as part of a community placemaking process to develop artwork and heritage interpretation for the Plaza.