Welcome to a better Haig Park as Experiments program begins

Released 18/06/2019

A community welcome event will be held Saturday to mark the start of the Haig Park Experiments program, inviting Canberrans to re-embrace the city centre’s backyard – and have a free cupcake while they’re at it.

The event is one of the 12 “experiments” during the initial phase of the program, which is being delivered by a University of Canberra led consortium.

The community welcome event will feature a Welcome to Country, free cupcakes and coffee, live music, arts activities, and an opportunity to hear about the broader Haig Park Experiments program.

City Renewal chief executive officer Malcolm Snow encouraged the community, especially those people who took part in the Haig Park Place Plan consultation, to return and try out the park during the experiments.

“The Haig Park Experiments program is about trialling events, activities and light-touch improvements to re-energise Haig Park and we will again need the community’s feedback during this process,” Mr Snow said.

“The project continues the dialogue with community and stakeholders through the realisation of the collective community vision for the park identified in the Haig Park Place Plan.

“Although the program, by its very nature, consists of temporary improvements, the community’s feedback will help us see what works, and what doesn’t, before making any permanent changes.”

The UC-led consortium, which includes Tait Network, Ainslie and Gorman Arts Centre, and Dionysus, will undertake three phases of experiments from June to October, starting with the Welcome phase before continuing to Discover and Celebrate phases. There will be 26 “experiments” in total.

The Welcome phase, which begins rolling out this week includes:

  • Community-driven activities that acknowledge and celebrate the ongoing relationship between First Nations people and Country.
  • New entrance features.
  • A chalk-marked running path.
  • Improvements to informal paths in Haig Park, such as path treatments, lighting, and signage.
  • Outdoor seating options for use during events and for informal use by park users.
  • Unique and playful "ballot bins" at existing bench locations to reduce cigarette litter.
  • Park caretakers who will be responsible for acting as park concierge, providing information about the park and the experiments as well as undertaking simple amenity tasks.
  • A portable multi-purpose cart for park caretakers to use for carrying workshop materials, lightweight seating, outdoor cooking equipment and more.
  • Additional lighting options to improve the aesthetics and amenity of the park.
  • A designated unfenced dog-friendly area that will be signposted and have water fountains, dog bowls, bags and bins.

For the full program, head to www.haigparkcbr.com.au and follow the project on Facebook and Instagram.

The community welcome event runs from 1pm to 3pm in Haig Park, near the corner of Corner of Lonsdale and Girrahween streets, Braddon.  The community welcome event will be preceded by a media call with the Haig Park Experiments consortium at 12.30pm.

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