The Woden Town Centre is a major community and commercial hub for the Woden Valley and wider Canberra region. It will be a place that attracts people to live, work, socialise and enjoy throughout the day and evenings. The Town Square is the central focal point for social and community activity that will connect people to a network of safe and active streets and public parks.
The main principles of the plan are:
1. Further diversify land uses to encourage more economic activity and residential development.
2. Improve the layout of streets, blocks and public spaces to make them easier to use.
3. Develop a strong community by allowing more residences, bringing the community hub further into the centre and improving the open spaces.
4. Improve access to and within the centre for pedestrians and cyclists.
5. Encourage buildings that help the streets and open spaces be more friendly, safe and welcoming.
The master plan claims to build on the important, iconic qualities of the centre as it enters a new phase of development. It also claims to set out how the centre could further develop as a vibrant, sustainable centre that continues to serve the Woden Valley and wider Canberra community.
It relies on bringing additional people into Woden the Woden Town Centre to create activity and does not set out a plan for rebuilding the social infrastructure that has closed, for example the basketball stadium and the CIT.
While there are some positive elements in the Master Plan, the Woden Valley Community Council believes it is limited in ambition for social infrastructure and social inclusion.
The Council does not support the building hierarchy that allows 12 to 28 storey buildings across the Centre with the Town Square limited to 3 hours of sunlight on one quarter of the square in winter. We are also concerned about the loss of Arabanoo Park.