Constitution Avenue, Canberra, ACT, Australia
Jane Irwin Landscape Architecture
Hill Thalis Architecture + Urban Projects
SMEC (Urban Strategy stage only)
photography: John Gollings
Winner – AIA (ACT) Canberra Medallion – 2017
– Sir John Overall Award for Urban Design – 2017
In the 1912 competition winning scheme for Canberra, Walter Burley Griffin and Marion Mahony Griffin presented the potential power of streets, proposing a city of avenues that demonstrated a deep resonance with the site, sensitivity to nature and a clear and precise understanding of and vision for Australian democratic society.
The crowning piece of this street network was to be the Grand Boulevard, or Consititution Avenue, as it is now known. Modelled on the world’s greatest boulevards, it would be the city’s high street and premier address with the highest density of commercial and residential buildings, while also providing an address for some of the main cultural buildings of the recreation areas adjacent to Lake Burley Griffin.
The project realises Griffin’s Avenue system and Grand Boulevard, which is by no means nostalgic but remains visionary. As an urban project it still possesses the potential to overhaul the way Canberra is traversed – improving the pedestrian journey, the driving experience, the potential to include high capacity transit modes as well as greatly improving the civic character and functioning of central Canberra.