The new gateway to the heart of global Sydney has been unveiled with today’s official opening of Parramatta’s Charles Street Square.
Adjacent to the ferry wharf at Parramatta Quay, the $12.9 million upgrade to Charles Street Square includes a six-metre-wide riverfront walk, amphitheatre and public shelter, providing a first-class arrival experience and gathering place for locals and visitors.
City of Parramatta Lord Mayor Pierre Esber said the upgrade had delivered a new front door to the City for those arriving via the Parramatta River.
“This will be the Circular Quay of the West – a gateway to our city we can all be proud of,” Cr Esber said.
“It sets an important first impression for visitors of a City that is proud of its past and excited about the future.
“It’s another plank in our plan to create better connections between the river and our communities and make the foreshore an integral part of destination Parramatta.”
Framed by trees and set amongst gardens, the area provides a riverside experience in the heart of Parramatta’s CBD. The project is constructed from high-quality polished concrete, steel and Australian hardwood for sustainability and flood-resilience.
The site’s unique history is celebrated through heritage interpretation, and next year a public art projection will tell the stories of Parramatta and its people.
The NSW Government contributed $4.65 million to the project from Transport for NSW and the Department of Planning and Environment.
Parramatta MP Donna Davis said Charles Street Square was a transformation for the ages.
“The Charles Street Square upgrade is playing a part in elevating Parramatta as a destination for people to work, live and play in Western Sydney,” Ms Davis said.
“The City of Parramatta has created an attractive and useable public space for communities to connect.
“Parramatta is a place that is meeting the growing needs of residents and visitors to the city and the new foreshore offers a distinct arrival experience for ferry passengers unlike no other.”
Minister for Planning and Public Spaces Paul Scully said the new-look square will become a great destination where the community can get together and unwind.
“Our $2.95 million investment as part of the NSW Public Spaces Legacy Program will activate and transform this vital transport interchange,” Mr Scully said.
“The new large terraces in the public square will enable Council to activate this open space and host public events.”