Flinders Street Revitalisation

Townsville, Queensland

This project recaptures the main street of a city that had been, like many worldwide, turned into a pedestrian mall in the 1980s. While some have rejuvenated their city centres, here was an example of the opposite – people embracing the suburban shopping centre and deserting the city centre.

We reinstated vehicles, regaining the street’s role as the city’s urban artery in its wider street network, and returned the city a main pedestrian square by transforming an underutilised cross-street which connects the city centre to its river.

However, it is from what we believe to be a design focus upon local materials and local semantics that the new street has redefined the ‘main street’. The historic elements in the city’s identity are reemphasised through a series of structures that frame them and perform multiple roles – social gatherings, outdoor cafes, market stalls.

The street is paved in the city’s porphyry, revitalising one of many local industries including lighting, furnishing and metalwork. Through the confluence of community participation and craft, this project demonstrates the value of ‘local’ over ubiquitous.

Flinders Street Revitalisation
Flinders Street Revitalisation
Flinders Street Revitalisation
  • Awards
  • Technical Information
  • Cox Team

Shortlisted in Landscape, World Architecture Festival 2014

National Award for Urban Design, AIA 2013

State Award for Urban Design, AIA QLD 2013

Townsville City Council
Project Status
Completed, 2008-2011
Key Consultants
AECOM, RPS, Dot Dash, Ray Holyoak, Riddel Architecture, Derlot, RLB
Contractor / Builder
Site Area
Matthew Cavanough
Jonathan Kopinski