gatheringWe are honoured to be both the first organisation to win this award for our contribution to the Australasian placemaking industry and the only organisation recognised this year in this category.

In addtion to the award, our project for Penrinth City Council, Penrith Trial Park, received commendation. Place Partners with Penrith City Council, Mike Lydon of the US Based Street Plans Collaborative, The Lot, UTS architecture students and local community members worked together to deliver Australia’s first tactical urbanism project.

This project is an important milestone for Australian Councils.

Implementing a city centre masterplan is complex, lengthy, expensive and potentially disruptive to the very place you are trying to improve. After Penrith City Council endorsed their Public Domain Masterplan (completed by Place Partners with Spackman Mossop Michaels last year), we asked: why do citizens have to wait two years to see improvements in their city and what can we do in the short term? The answer was a 1-year trial installation on the site of a future planned park.

The process of organising, facilitating and delivering the finished park took a little over 2 months – an extraordinarily short period. A little while ago the park celebrated its 6 month birthday and a formal review of impacts has been undertaken. In the spirit of the trial that it is, some changes to the design and use have also been delivered. Penrith City Council dared to go where most Councils wouldn’t, to take a risk on doing something differently, and were willing to learn along the way. We congratulate them and thank them for their trust, commitment and enthusiasm.

Visit Place Leaders to read more about the Award and this year’s recipients.