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4.5 Redfern Railway Station, Gibbons and Regent Streets - Draft

Land use and Design Concepts proposed in RWA Draft Redfern-Waterloo Built Environment Plan February 2006.

The Redfern Railway Station, Gibbons and Regent Streets site straddles the rail corridor. It is bounded by Lawson Street to the north, Margaret Street to the south, Regent Street to the east, and the rail corridor and residential development to the west.

Existing characteristics

Redfern Railway Station and its immediate surrounds is the southern gateway to the Sydney CBD. Despite its proximity to the Sydney CBD and its role in the metropolitan transport network, the Railway Station and surrounds retains a suburban character and density.

Redfern Railway Station is underutilised even though nearly all suburban and inter urban trains stop at Redfern Railway Station, and it provides superior access to and within metropolitan Sydney than any other Railway Station with the exception of Central Station. Underutilisation of the station and its surrounds has contributed to it becoming a through route rather than a destination point for commuters.

Redfern Railway Station is the focus of local public transport activity in Redfern-Waterloo.

It is the central point for commuters and students and is located within 100 metres of Redfern Street - the main street of Redfern. The majority of pedestrian movement from the Railway Station channels eastward toward the town centre and westward from the Lawson Street entrance toward the University of Sydney.

Two major arterial roads - Gibbons Street and Regent Street- separate the Railway Station from the retail centre at Redfern and Regent Streets. These two arterial roads funnel metropolitan and regional traffic through Redfern to and from the Sydney CBD. Traversing these two arterial roads is a major safety issue for pedestrians and disconnects the station from the retail heart of Redfern.

Presently, employment is concentrated around the TNT towers located adjacent from the Railway Station across from Gibbons Street. The recent relocation of the police and government agencies in the area has boosted local trade and activated the station area. The Railway Station contains a number of heritage items, identified in the South Sydney LEP, including the station building on Lawson Street.

Redfern Railway Station is in need of an upgrade. The inadequate access, particularly for less mobile persons, the lack of activated civic spaces and ground level business activity contribute to a perception of dereliction.

The limited activities around the Railway Station reinforce its role as a through route rather than as a destination for commuters.

The public domain within and around the site is unattractive and uninviting. Pedestrian connections to employment and retail centres are not strong and do not provide active surveillance.

Business activity in Redfern and Regent Streets, the main shopping strips adjacent to the site has suffered a decline in trade and patronage over the past decade despite signs of emerging small businesses such as artist studios and cafes in Regent Street.

Existing land use zone

The following zones apply to the Redfern Railway Station, Gibbons and Regent Streets site:

• Redfern Railway Station and the rail corridor is zoned ‘Railways’ under SREP 26. Within the Railways Zone” permissible uses are largely restricted to railway related activities.

• The remainder of the site is zoned ‘Mixed Use 10’ under the South Sydney Local Environmental Plan. The zone permits a mixture of compatible uses such as residential, retail, commercial, light-industrial and industrial development.


Proposed land use concept

Establish a focal hub for business, retail and residential activity around good civic spaces and pedestrian linkages.

Diagram 4.9 [515 KB] illustrates the proposed land use concept for the site.

Proposed design concept

Transform the precinct to emulate its status as the southern gateway to the Sydney CBD by:

• providing development potential to maximise the unique status of the railway station as a public transport hub of metropolitan significance

• encouraging the development of a vibrant, culturally diverse, multi use town centre with quality medium and high density development

• upgrading Redfern Railway Station including the concourse and entrance, to more equitably address the town centre, adjoining commercial sites and increased commuter movement.

Create a new Town Centre at the Redfern Station, Gibbons and Regent Streets site to provide a vibrant focal point and heart for Redfern by:

• providing sufficient development potential and creating a business hub comprising jobs, shops, services and amenities for existing and new residents

• supporting accommodation facilities which are related to or ancillary to business or educational purposes

• developing a quality, activated, civic space with retail tenancies which is inviting, safe and accessible to residents, commuters and students.

Establish an identifiable node and appropriate urban scale and streetscape at the Town Centre by:

• achieving a critical mass of density to activate the site

• concentrating building heights toward the centre of the site and creating an urban boulevard character with appropriate human scale and enclosure along the northern section of Regent Street and Lawson Street

• designing tower podiums to maximise existing and new street alignments, break up the development scale and increase permeability to development plots

• ensuring that street environment and podium levels are pleasant places for pedestrians

• creating additional area for new ground floor retail space and activate street edges

• providing a transition in urban scale from south of Marion Street toward the centre to be sensitive to the existing residential development in this vicinity.

Reinforce the status of the Town Centre, Redfern and Regent Streets as the main shopping strips by:

• establishing a new concourse at the eastern end of the station to channel access to Marion, Gibbons and Lawson Streets with the primary exit point on the axis with Redfern Street

• reconnecting the Redfern Railway Station to the proposed Town Centre, Redfern Street, Regent Street, Marion Street, the University of Sydney, North Eveleigh and the ATP through defined pedestrian and cycle links

• introducing traffic management measures to improve pedestrian safety and accessibility to and from the Redfern Railway Station across Gibbons and Regent Streets.

Provide a pleasant, activated and safe public domain by:

• ensuring quality landscaping, tree planting, lighting and good urban design of civic spaces along defined pedestrian and cycle spines and streets

• encouraging active uses such as eating areas, retail and commercial spaces on the ground floor accessible to passing pedestrians

• ensuring that new commercial development provides private open space courtyards designed for appropriate sunlight penetration and amenity

• ensure that the public domain adjoins or is overlooked by active uses to provide passive surveillance at all times.

Protect the heritage of the site by:

• encouraging the reinterpretation of heritage through the reuse of heritage materials and fabric in any redevelopment

• where practical, the adaptive re-use of significant heritage items associated with the station and railway lines.

The proposed heights and floor space ratio for the site are illustrated in Diagram 4.10 [508 KB].

Proposed land use zoning

Business Zone – Commercial Core

Artist's Impression: View from Civic Space looking east to Redfern Street [345 KB]

Artist's Impression: View looking west to Civic Square and entrance to Redfern Railway Station [263 KB]