These days we often hear the phrase 'placemaking' thrown around but what does it actually mean?
Placemaking is an approach to planning, design and management of public spaces that involves not just government departments, such as councils, but also the community. It enables people to collectively share their thoughts and ideas on how public spaces can be reinvented and rejuvenated to offer more value.
In early 2017 the City of West Torrens responded to a request from the local community in Mile End to look at ways that we could breathe new life into the reserve at the end of Admella Street.
The project, which became known as the Admella Street Laneway, originated from a local café owner with the desire to bring local residents and businesses together to activate a local reserve as a pocket park.
In order to help facilitate the bringing together of the community, business owners and Council representatives, Wax Design was contracted to host a two-part community engagement program that explored the potential upgrade of this laneway.
The workshops were attended by local residents, business owners and property owners who took part in interviews, cognitive mapping and three dimensional planning techniques, using Lego, model making and plasticine. These methods enabled people to explore the potential of the site by modelling how they wanted it to look.
The community also participated in an engagement opportunity whereby they shared ideas and brainstormed concepts around design elements and how they could benefit users of a proposed pocket park.
To enhance this experience, Adelaide company Refuel Creative recorded the active community engagement process on video to highlight how the community, Council and consultants can work together to generate concepts, expand ideas and understand and resolve issues.
The end result - creation of a masterplan for Admella Street that has community buy in.
View the video here.