Campbell Section 5 occupies a pivotal site in Canberra at the junction of two major Griffin axes between Capital Hill and Mount Ainslie, and Civic and Russell. Few sites, by location, have this opportunity to reinforce the pre-eminent Griffin Legacy.
The Griffins’ early plans proposed a grand boulevard linking the Municipal Centre (Civic) with the Market Centre (Russell) – Constitution Avenue. Whilst this avenue was realised in almost all its entirety, the centre of Russell failed to develop as the Griffins intended. Early plans envisaged a destination and waterfront square for the junction of these important axes. Further erosion of the status of this boulevard occurred with the creation of Parkes Way in the 50’s – dividing Constitution Avenue from the Waterfront Parklands and the group of public buildings in the landscape.
The six hectare Section 5 has sat unbuilt, at the angle of Constitution Avenue and ANZAC Parade, forming the south-west corner of the post war suburb of Campbell. The project knits this residual area into both Campbell’s street layout and the formal landscape of Anzac Parade – creating a cohesive urban precinct and linking these distinct neighbourhoods. The adopted Concept Master Plan creates a generous new public domain, including 4 new streets, 5 urban blocks, landscaped squares and a major new park.
The Concept Master Plan makes a contemporary urban project attuned to the Griffin Legacy works. Key themes of streetscape and amenity, open space provision and more intensive built form have benefited from iterative design between community engagement sessions. The public domain works have been designed and fully documented by JILA and Hill Thalis. The 5 blocks have been individually sold to optimise financial returns to the ACT Government.
The streets and public domain were completed in early 2016 with some limitation on access due to the construction of the new apartment buildings. The new park was opened to the public in April 2016.