The Annual Double Bay Street Festival was held on Sunday, 6th November, and for the first time Kiaora Lane was included as the Kiaora Lane Garden Bar. There’s nothing we like more than seeing Arcadia landscapes activated with people – as you can see from Alex and Mike’s photos, the place was filled with people of all ages, enjoying the pop up bars, food stalls, kids activities and gorgeous Sydney spring weather.
Kiaora Lane was opened in 2014 as part of the Kiaora Lands redevelopment, a $110 joint venture with Woolworths with the aim to revitalise Double Bay. Originally designed as a shared way, the laneway was quickly closed to traffic due to the high level of activation of pedestrians to this new public space. Plans are underway to further enhance this space for open air community amenity.
Kiaora Lane is a great example of how private investment into the creation of usable public spaces can help attract people back to local town centres and rejuvenate flagging retail precincts. With the changing residential landscape of Sydney to include higher density housing in many of our suburbs, successful open spaces will be critical to creating and sustaining local communities. With the uncertainty around the upcoming amalgamation of local councils, private investment will be crucial for providing the leadership needed to ensure these spaces are delivered to the community.
The success of this new public amenity made it the ideal site for the Kiaora Lane Garden Bar, with its food and wine stalls, foodtrucks, DJs and bands and kids activities. We’re looking forward to seeing it in use for similar community events, such as the upcoming French Soiree on 19 November with all the divine sounding champagne, French wine, food and entertainment (think Can Can dancers, mimes, French DJs and face painting for the kids).