About The Project

Bass Coast Shire Council have adopted the Wonthaggi Activity Centre Streetscape Master Plan after a period of consultation. The Master Plan addresses the following key objectives:

  • Re-create ‘Streets for people’
  • Reinvigorate the character of Wonthaggi
  • Activate centre of town and connect to the four ends
  • Shift the transport mode hierarchy from vehicle first to pedestrian first
  • Flexible design solutions to meet short term and long-term goals
  • Future proofing through innovative solutions and smart city infrastructure

The Master Plan addresses incentives to ride and walk, protected bike lanes which will provide safe and comfortable environments to travel, ensuring safe access to all pedestrians, ample carparking and shared streetscapes.

The study area for the Wonthaggi Activity Centre Streetscape Master Plan is bound by Murray Street to the North, Watt Street to the South, Bass Highway/McKenzie Street to the East and Biggs Drive/Billson Street to the West. The central Graham Street, and the intersecting McBride Avenue, form the two core axes of the study area. The road network, the Council car parking, the generous pedestrian paved areas outside shops, and the local laneways, are currently viewed as opportunities to further activate the Town Centre.

The streetscape improvements, achieved through creatively landscaped areas will provide a physical and community connection to multiple spaces throughout the town.

Next steps

  • Schematic design has been executed.
  • Detailed design to follow.
  • Construction anticipated to commence 2024.

Frequently asked questions

Wonthaggi faces several challenges, which the concept plans aims to address. The demographics are changing, with the population aging, and we need to adapt the streets to ensure everyone is included. We also face hotter days due to climate change, and need to provide more shade and shelter from harsh weather. There is also the opportunity to reinvigorate the civic and retail identity to support the local economy by making Wonthaggi a more attractive and pleasant place to be in.

It has not been decided how long the final master plan could take to implement. However, it is likely to take many years, and this means that change could be gradual rather than all at once. We call this a scalable and staged approach and recognise that plans may need to change along the way.

We have a no net loss of parking across the Wonthaggi. This means that while some car parks will be removed from some areas, other new ones will be added elsewhere in the town. There are currently approximately 574 across the town centre, and the concept design includes 603 car parks. We estimate there will be a gain of approximately 29 Car parks to the overall Activity Centre area.

Unfortunately, some streets will have less parking that they currently do. The concept sees some loses on Graham Street and Billson Street to provide space for trees.

To try to help people shop in Wonthaggi we have identified parts of Watt Street and McKenzie Street which will have more car parking.

The Master Plan proposes an increase in disability carparks throughout the centre to bring it in line with standards and to accommodate large number of patrons visiting certain parts of the centre i.e., Arts Centre and Workmen’s Club.

The existing number of disabled car parks in the centre is 18 spaces. The amount included in the master plan is 23, an increase of 5 disabled car parks.

Mobility lanes have been included in our concept plans. We recognise that the way people travel though Wonthaggi is changing. There are more people on mobility scooters. We want to ensure everyone can travel through Wonthaggi. We have proposed lanes between the footpath and the car parking, which would be a dedicated part of the street where people could use a mobility scooter, ride a bicycle, or go for a run. These lanes provide space away from shop doors to do these activities without the risk of injuring a shopper. The space from these lanes could come from slight road narrowing, but we do not need to remove any car parking to fit them in.

Historical photo of the Whalebone Hotel