New Urban Icon Needed

The Property Council of Australia has welcomed news that a Development Application (DA) for stage one restoration and maintenance works of the heritage listed Newcastle Railway Station has been lodged with Council. Hunter Director, Andrew Fletcher, said it was further proof that the team at Revitalising Newcastle were “doers”.

“Hat’s off to them – they’re cracking on with the work the community said had highest priority”

“Whatever the final form and function of this historic site, these works are the starting point for preserving the heritage value.”

Fletcher said it was also a “smart piece of business” by Revitalising Newcastle to make the space accessible and usable while permanent future uses are considered.

“It’s good for commerce and connectivity – a rejuvenated station with new public spaces will be a new people magnet for the city and a new active transport link for the people.”

But he warned Novocastrians to keep their sights set high and to not be content with a “spit and polish” job on the station. And he added the Property Council would keep pursuing its ambition to see the station conserved and repurposed as an iconic landmark building stepping down to the waterfront.

“A new urban icon that anchors Newcastle’s city centre as a destination and becomes our Sydney Opera House, or Guggenheim, or MONA”

He added that it would be a wasted economic opportunity if the temporary fix became permanent.

“The new space and amenity will be fine for the odd pop-up event, but it won’t be a drawcard for time-poor international visitors chasing an authentic and immersive Australian experience.”

“Newcastle needs an iconic cultural attraction on that site to capture the job creating, high-yielding visitors from the Asia-Pacific and China which will soon start streaming through Newcastle Airport.”

“Without it, billions of export dollars will leak to Sydney and beyond as international arrivals at Newcastle Airport bypass the regional capital altogether and transfer directly to other destinations.”

 

Media contact:  Andrew Fletcher | M 0407 410 017 | E afletcher@propertycouncil.com.au