When Imagination Goes Public


When Imagination Goes Public
When Imagination Goes Public

Australian Placemaking Practice

Published: August 2015

by Robin Abad Ocubillo

Laneways and Street Parks in Adelaide and Melbourne

SF Pavement to Parks* was invited to participate in the Australian Walking & Cycling Conference in summer 2015, where academic scholars, practitioners, and policymakers met to share research and best practices on urban design. In addition to the conference, the study trip also included site visits with policymakers, urban designers, and placemakers in five municipalities throughout the Adelaide and Melbourne metropolitan areas.

Over the last decade, a thriving laneways (alleyways) culture in downtown Adelaide and Melbourne evolved from landmark shifts in planning and building policies at the local and state levels. The remade policy environment has resulted in a varied network of spaces that is are Cities’ most-touted social, cultural, and economic asset. Besides providing an overview of the planning and urban design controls shaping laneway development, the presentation will depict a typical procession through laneways which blend public and private, historic and contemporary, planned and spontaneous activities.

The presentation also covered three ‘Street Park’ case studies in the Melbourne region, all formed from the closure of roadway. Each project was preceded in its current, final form by various demonstration stages ranging from one-day popup parks to sustained trials of up to a year. Inspired to by public space experimentation here in San Francisco, these recent Australian projects have yielded valuable lessons and insights which can inform our own future work.

* The Pavement to Parks program has merged with Groundplay. Best practices found in this document are still applicable to Groundplay projects.

This presentation gave an overview of placemaking practices in Australia – with an emphasis on laneways (alleyways) and street parks – and their relevance to public space and life in San Francisco.

Download PDF
Related Publications:

See all publications »




Groundplay is a multi-agency program of the


ADA & Accessibility

The City and County of San Francisco recognizes its obligation under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and the Language Access Ordinance to provide equal access to all its residents.

Free Language Assistance

免 費語言協助 / Ayuda gratuita con el idioma / Бесплатная помощь переводчиков / Trợ giúp Thông dịch Miễn phí / Assistance linguistique gratuite / 無料の言語支援 / 무료 언어 지 원 / Libreng tulong para sa wikang Tagalog / คว"ม ช่วยเหลือท"งภ"ษ"โดยไม่ เส'ยค่าใช้จ่าย

Dial 3-1-1 (within SF only) or (415) 701-2311

New Subscribers:
To sign up to receive Groundplay news and updates, please enter email address below.

Returning Subscribers:
To review, modify or cancel your subscriber preferences, please enter the email that you used upon sign-up.