New riverbank development enhances connectivity & accessibility in Adelaide

22nd Jun, 2016

The $6bn redevelopment of the Adelaide Riverbank precinct which includes the Bio-Medical City, Adelaide Convention Centre and Adelaide Oval projects is about to enter its next phase with works to commence in August on the 25,000sq metre Festival Plaza development (which includes two key private projects).

The project site, located a 1-minute walk east of the Adelaide Convention Centre will see the entire Riverbank region linked to become the most connected and easily accessible business, events and entertainment precinct in Australia.  All Riverbank facilities as well as 3,500 hotel rooms are situated within 5 minutes’ walk of the Adelaide Convention Centre situated in the heart of the Riverbank Precinct.

This new phase will include a $220m redevelopment of the plaza around the Festival Theatre - transforming one of the city’s most important public spaces into Adelaide’s premier meeting and entertainment hub including an expansion of the existing green space in response to public consultation. Wide promenades will connect major city streets to the plaza, the Adelaide Oval footbridge and through to the Convention Centre.

The two private projects, a $430 million office building, retail area and car park upgrade by the Walker Corporation is due for completion in 2020 whilst the $300 million SKYCITY Adelaide Casino expansion is set to commence at the end of 2017 includes a 5 star hotel, retail and entertainment offering.

Vehicles within the area will be neither seen nor heard - the design totally separates cars and pedestrians with large scale underground parking and existing roads leading into the area to be transformed into public spaces for dining and retail purposes.    

In addition to the Riverbank precinct development, the Adelaide City Council in conjunction with the State Government has announced a $15m upgrade to the laneways connecting the Riverbank to the famous Adelaide Central market.  In a move that further enhances the accessibility and ease of movement around the city, the largest undercover fresh food market in the Southern Hemisphere offering fresh local produce as well as international delicacies and an array of dining options will be linked with a pedestrian and cycle friendly pathway through 5 laneways to the Riverbank. The project will include public art, greenspaces, street furniture and landscaping.  It also enhances accessibility to the majority of the 70 new small venue bars and restaurants (open since the change in liquor licensing laws in 2013) located either on or adjacent this new city ‘corridor’.

Damien Kitto, CEO, Adelaide Convention Bureau, said "Adelaide’s Riverbank precinct will surprise and delight those new to the city and those who have not visited in some time.  It is nationally unique in its ease of accessibility and walking distance proximity to key city attractions and venues as well as a multitude of boutique bars, restaurants and major hotels.  The city’s two Universities, the new pedestrian corridor to the central market as well as its cultural boulevard including the State Library, Art Gallery and Museum and premier shopping mall are also within walking distance of the Riverbank.

This concentration of venues and facilities positions Adelaide as the easiest city in the country – and undoubtedly one of the easiest in the world in which to travel.  It also eliminates travel time and its associated costs for event planners whilst providing an exceptionally attractive and full package offering for delegates."

South Australian Premier, Jay Weatherill, said "The Festival Plaza will become a landmark site in the heart of Adelaide’s Riverbank Precinct, bringing together all of the precinct’s icon sites such as the Adelaide Oval, the Festival Centre, the Convention Centre and the Riverbank Bridge. 

The upgraded Festival Plaza will become a unique world-class hub for the arts, culture, tourism and entertainment.   It will be defined by a number of key places including, the new square, the northern promenade, integration with King William Street, the Art Space Plaza, a reimagining of Station Road and a new entry to Adelaide Railway Station. 

Once complete, it will add to Adelaide’s reputation as one of the world’s most liveable cities, building upon our progressive reforms that rejuvenated our city with interesting laneways and unique small bars."

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