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We are creating a new precinct to provide early years services and community programs for all ages in our community.

The former Canterbury Bowls Club pavilion, the Canterbury Maternal and Child Health Centre and the former Canterbury Public Library buildings next to Canterbury Gardens are undergoing internal upgrades and heritage restoration works.


These buildings will be renewed internally to include fit-for-purpose, modern facilities while protecting and preserving the neighbourhood heritage and character of the buildings for future generations to enjoy.  

Status

Development of the new Canterbury Community Precinct will begin in September 2020, with construction scheduled for completion in early 2022.

Timeline

Dates Stage Progress update
January to September 2019 Service provider consultation We consulted with the service providers to develop a proposed design that will meet the needs of the community and provide service providers with high quality, modern facilities.
11 October to 10 November 2019 Community consultation The community had the opportunity to provide feedback about the proposed design concept via an online survey and two information sessions.
April 2020 Plans released We continue to work closely with the service providers who will be housed in the Precinct on the detailed design elements.
September 2020 Construction to commence  

About the project

We are restoring existing buildings in Canterbury Gardens to create a precinct which provides early years services and community programs for all ages in our community.

These important community services currently operate in various locations in Canterbury. Relocating and combining them in one convenient precinct will ensure the ongoing delivery of high quality and easily accessible services to the community.

It will provide long term security for service providers and assist in building strong connections by co-locating them in a shared space.

Services in the precinct will include:

  • Canterbury Maternal and Child Health
  • Canterbury Norwood Baptist Kindergarten 
  • Playstation Occasional Care
  • Canterbury Toy Library  
  • Canterbury Community Garden
  • Interchange Inner East
  • Canterbury Neighbourhood Centre
  • Canterbury History Group, Balwyn and Surrey Hills Historical Societies.

The new precinct will include: 

  • a permanent home for the kindergarten to ensure continued access to an important early years service for families in the community, as their current accommodation arrangements do not extend beyond 2020
  • a permanent home for the Canterbury Neighbourhood Centre so they can continue to provide their range of programs and create a central meeting place for the community
  • a dedicated space in the precinct for the three historical societies, providing an opportunity for them to securely store and preserve important items for future generations to enjoy
  • underground car parking
  • improvements to the Logan Street underpass to provide a safer travel pathway for the community, as well as increase visibility and direct access to the Canterbury Gardens.

The precinct is an $11.7 million initiative and outlined as a major infrastructure project in the Council Budget 2019-20

The Victorian Government is contributing $1.6 million to the project through the Children’s Facilities Capital Program, aimed at providing local families with access great local kindergartens. 

Community consultation

During the consultation period in October 2019, over 100 people provided feedback on the proposed design in person, via email or via the online survey.

The key themes identified in the community consultation were:

  • traffic
  • parking
  • pedestrian safety
  • connection to and from the Canterbury Gardens
  • impact on Canterbury Gardens.

Changes made after consultation

In response to the themes raised during consultation, the following changes to the design were made.

Traffic

We are proposing to remove the on-street parking on the east side of Kendall Street between the entry and exit points of the new carpark. This will reduce traffic congestion and provide a safer environment when approaching the Kendall Street corner.

We will also conduct traffic and parking surveys in the area in the near future to ascertain the level of non-local traffic on surrounding streets. This information will be used to determine whether additional traffic treatments are required to manage traffic flow and improve safety.

Parking

The total number of on-site car parks has been increased to 45. This is an increase from the 13 formal car parks that are currently on site and 18 informal car parks on the gravel.

The current on-street Permit Zone parking spaces will be retained for use by Precinct staff, volunteers or visitors.

Pedestrian safety

We have included a new pedestrian path from the ground level car park that leads directly to the main foyer to provide a safer and more direct route to the facility. Warning signs will be installed to caution exiting vehicles of pedestrians in area and vice versa.

Connection to and from the Canterbury Gardens

Some community members highlighted that access to the new facilities directly from the Canterbury Gardens was important to them.

We investigated creating a new access point at the north east corner of the main building (existing bowls club). Including this had an adverse effect on the layout of the Precinct resulting in a smaller play space for the kindergarten, less privacy for the Maternal and Child Health Centre and potential safety concerns in the foyer. Based on this, an additional pedestrian access point has not been included in the design.

Some community members commented that they would like better pedestrian connectivity throughout the suburb of Canterbury.

We are currently considering how a pedestrian link at the rail overpass on Kendall St might be implemented to assist both vehicles and pedestrians. This will occur outside of the Canterbury Community Precinct Project scope.

Impact to Canterbury Gardens

This project focuses on developing new facilities within the existing Council footprint. There will be no impact to the size, layout or style of the Canterbury Gardens.

More information

To receive updates on this project via email, sign up to the Canterbury Community Precinct mailing list.

For more information, please contact Hannah Martin on 9278 4646 at [email protected].

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