Connect South to open next week
The City of South Perth today announced that the new Connect South, Mends Street piazza will be open to the public from next Thursday, 21 November 2019.
EDIT: the site will now be opening on the afternoon of Friday 22 November 2019.
The $7.5 million project has been years in the making and aims to transform Mends Street as the gateway to South Perth, reinforcing the links with Elizabeth Quay and Perth City, and creating a vibrant, unique destination for residents and visitors to meet at and enjoy.
Two giant shade canopies in the shape of a numbat and frilled neck lizard greet visitors upon arrival. Chosen in conjunction with the Perth Zoo, the animals represent the zoo’s focus on conservation and its commitment to wildlife and showcasing native fauna.
A range of public artworks have been installed, with meerkats and emus continuing the zoo theme in the piazza and up Mends Street, and sand sculptures highlighting the Whadjuk Noongar history and connection to the area. Public seating, improved lighting and trees that provide a European-style canopy shade for visitors have also been installed.
A range of light installations including a suspended chandelier will help illuminate the space at night, and the piazza will hold a range of events in future, utilising the extraordinary location that offers stunning views of Perth City.
City of South Perth Mayor Greg Milner (pictured below left) and Chief Executive Officer Geoff Glass (below right) announced the imminent opening this morning at the Mends Street location, along with Steve Irons MP, Federal Member for Swan (below centre) within the fences as some of the final touches were being completed.
“I’ve seen this project take shape from my time as a councillor and now, as the City’s new Mayor, am proud for this to be the first major initiative I have the honour of helping launch,” Mayor Milner said.
“I’m a strong advocate for improving social and economic development in the City and have felt a buzz on the foreshore in anticipation of Connect South’s opening.
“It will enhance and invigorate the Mends Street area, connect South Perth with the CBD, encourage local and visiting families to the foreshore, and help support the local businesses.
“The zoo theme recognises and promotes the City of South Perth’s biggest attraction, with the giant animal canopies and wildlife themed public artworks helping bring the new piazza to life.”
The project has a $7.5 million price tag, with $2.5 million from the National Stronger Regions Round 3 funding and $5 million from the City of South Perth.
Mr Irons was instrumental in securing the funds to finance the project.
"Connect South has always been a priority ever since Elizabeth Quay was delivered over the other side of the Perth foreshore," Mr Irons said.
"Aside from providing a brilliant community amenity and gateway to South Perth and the Perth Zoo, this project was built by local West Australian businesses and employed hundreds of local tradespeople and craftsmen. I also expect local shops and businesses in the area will reap the rewards of increased patronage.
"Next week it will be open to the public and I greatly look forwards to local families, visitors and tourists alike enjoying this spectacular precinct."
The majority of the funding was spent on the on the piazza foreshore area with minor updates to the north end of Mends Street.
A number of events will utilise this new space over summer with the City’s 2019/20 Arts, Events and Culture Calendar launched this week and featuring Christmas Carols in December and a new SouthSide Summer series early next year.
See the City’s website for more information on Connect South.
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