North Bank Master Plan


North Bank Master Plan

LocationLaunceston, TAS
ClientLaunceston City Council
ServicesLandscape Master Planning
Site Area11.7 ha (5.4 ac)
Budget$8 million AUD

Creating the Master Plan for Launceston’s North Bank was a joint venture between OCULUS and Cumulus Studio based in Tasmania.

The brief was to transform the once industrial riverside lands on the city edge into a mixed-use precinct suitable for community occupation and compatible private development. We sought to retain the site’s industrial maritime character whilst overlaying a wild, natural landscape.

The team imagined this landscape as three distinct settings. The “urban green” and part-deconstructed wool shed building are integrated to house such activities as concerts, art exhibitions, swap meets, adventure play, and markets. Downriver, a series of “river rooms” have been designed for occupation by families and friends, complete with picnic tables, temporal art installations, community gardens, and views to the city. A wildflower meadow binds the rooms together. As a way of referencing the Parlevar, the first people of Tasmania, this meadow will be planted with native species. Non-native trees will also be planted to enhance the sense of seasonality and change.

These main sites are trimmed with an industrial garden (for skaters), rowing sheds, and remnant silos that the team imagined would be used as a hotel that welcomes the public by way of its event programming.

The site connects the university arts precinct, seaport marina, the city, and the river via bridges, pathways, and cycle ways. A meandering path weaves through the meadow connecting the river rooms and urban green. The space has been designed to be experienced as a landscape that opens up and then closes where the river can be touched and, most importantly, is accessible to all.