How will the trees be managed ?
The Village Green currently contains a mix of native and exotic tree species, planted at different times, without a clear structure or sequence. A number of trees were memorial plantings, and include small plaques confirming their history.
The Working Group Directions Paper proposes a more active, structured and higher quality Village Green, including increased tree planting and the establishment of a pedestrian walk, connecting the cottages across the Village Green. The walk could include seating and planting beds as well as path lighting and other services to support the activation of the Village Green. The further detailed design of the Village Green would follow the endorsement of the Concept Design for the Cottages and would be staged in conjunction with the building works. The landscape design will include a detailed assessment of all tree planting.
However, for the purpose of the development of the Concept Design, and with the support of the Working Group, Council staff have reviewed two medium eucalyptus north of No. 76 Edmund Avenue, and recommend removal of the eastern one. This tree is of reasonable condition but of poor form and structure and likely to cause increased long term maintenance concerns following the Cottage redevelopment.
The western tree is more significant in stature and nature and will be retained, protected and highlighted as a feature within the Village Green.
Increased tree planting of species more appropriate and consistent across the Village Green is proposed. In addition, three smaller trees north of No. 72 and No. 74 are also proposed to be removed and similarly replaced with more.
What will the new extensions be used for?
The Concept Design presents the Cottages holistically and their relationship to the Village Green and Edmund Avenue. The designs respond to the expectations of Council and the Working Group, as well as reflect input from relevant stakeholders and tenants to understand their aspirations.
The key changes for each Cottage include:
- 72 Edmund Avenue – Business Innovation Hub – existing internal areas rationalised to provide for flexible meeting / teaching areas for business and community use, as well as additional office work spaces. The existing public toilets are to be rebuilt with improved facilities including three unisex cubicles, equal access and baby change facilities.
- 74 and 76 Edmund Avenue – Co-working Incubator Hub – existing internal areas are to be reconfigured to provide new open workspace and communal facilities, within the existing Cottages to increase workspaces (small office, open plan and interactive ‘hot-desk’ spaces). The two adjacent Cottages are linked across the rear by the new contemporary addition to address the Village Green and increase shared space between the two. The Edmund Avenue street frontage will maintain the integrity of individual Cottages, including access to light from existing windows. A second link between the rear of No. 72 and No. 74 is also proposed.
If Cottages 72, 74 and 76 were linked, it would create a business, innovation and co-working hub in one location, increasing the appeal and efficiency of each cottage.
The linkages would be designed with flexibility to allow for future separation of the cottages if required.
- 78 and 80-82 Edmund Avenue – Unley Museum – the concept aims to provide expanded gallery spaces adjacent to the Village Green, with a new recognised public entrance from the Village Green. The new gallery space will allow for reallocation of existing internal areas for additional administration facilities and expanded storage to better support the Museum and gallery functions. The toilets will be reorganised to provide secure external public access to support community events on the Village Green, when required. Public access would be controlled by access from the walkway between No. 76 and No. 78.
In addition, an undercover open-sided link with the Potters’ Club that would offer potential outdoor activities for school groups and shared with the Potters’ Club outdoor activities space has been included.
- 84 Edmund Avenue – Adelaide Potters’ Club – consolidation, increase and reconfiguration of kilns, workshop, studio and teaching spaces, with enhanced communal gallery spaces. The extension will better integrate the Club into the Village Green.
An undercover open-sided link with the Museum that would offer potential outdoor demonstration, teaching and event space, and shared with the Museum has been included.
What is the Civic Precinct Working Group?
The Unley Civic Precinct Working Group (the Working Group) was established in 2018 to assist the Council in developing a long-term vision for the Unley Civic Precinct (the area bounded by Unley Road, Oxford Terrace, Rugby Street and Edmund Avenue).
The Objectives of the Working Group are to:
- provide community input into planning for future development of the City of Unley Civic Precinct;
- develop options for the consideration of Council that provide for the appropriate development of the Civic Precinct, including consideration of:
- short (0-5 years), medium (5-10 years) and long term (10+ years) opportunities;
- accessibility to the community;
- integration with property owned by St. Augustine Parish;
- the future of the Civic Building and opportunities for consolidation or enhancement of Council facilities;
- current and potential use of the Cottages, including whether they should be retained; and
- integration of Oxford Terrace.
- act as a linkage between Council and the general community in providing feedback during the development of concepts or ideas for the Civic Precinct
Following an expression of interest process, six (6) community members were appointed to the Working Group including representatives from FOCUS, SOS Village Green and St Augustine, and supported by Council staff.
The Working Group has met a number of times to consider and discuss opportunities for activating and enhancing the Civic Precinct area, which were documented in the Draft Directions Paper prepared in late 2018. The Directions Paper informed the budget submission relating to the enhancements to the Village Green as well as the development of Concept Designs for the Edmund Avenue Cottages.
What is the long term vision for the Civic Precinct ?
The Directions Paper developed by the Civic Precinct Working Group reflects the outcomes of the Working Group session, integrating the shared aspirations or expectations for the Civic Precinct, including:
- The Unley Civic Precinct should attract more of the local community to access and enjoy the precinct, providing greater flexibility of use during the day and early evenings;
- The Unley Civic Precinct is defined by the quality of its safer local streetscapes, built and natural heritage, flexible public spaces and diversity of community services;
- The Unley Civic Precinct provides greater co-ordination between the different stakeholders to provide for the needs of the local community; and
- The Unley Civic Precinct is a central community destination, supported by a program of services, events and activities, in a range of greener civic settings.
The Directions Paper considered both the built form and services provided within the Precinct, as well the quality and appeal of the spaces around the buildings, including the Village Green and the surrounding streetscapes.