Albany’s Hartman Gardens transforms

Published: Monday, 28 October 2019 at 9:19:21 AM

An underutilised public open space in the heart of Albany’s CBD has been transformed into a regional and local community activity hub that celebrates heritage and culture.

The refresh of Alison Hartman Gardens is a key part of the broader revitalisation of Albany’s City Centre, connecting the Affordable Student Accommodation Project, Albany Tourism & Information Hub, Albany Public Library, Town Square and Albany Town Hall.

Formerly the playing grounds of the Albany State School from 1902 to 1974, the gardens provide a strong link to Albany’s history and are named in honour of teacher Edith Alison Hartman who taught at the school from 1924 to 1967.

Local Menang Noongar culture also formed an integral part of the revitalisation of the gardens, with four local Noongar artists collaborating with the City of Albany on the Mokare Public Art Project.

Enhancements to the garden include a refurbished Mokare Statue space, multipurpose event spaces, public art, accessible pathways, native gardens, historical interpretation, lighting and furniture.

Extra water and power stations have improved capacity for community events, and new multi-functional poles will allow the display of community banners, decorations and CCTV.

City of Albany Chief Executive Officer Andrew Sharpe said the community’s feedback on the new gardens has been very positive.

“It’s a really impressive design and build that the community can be proud of and we’re really pleased to be able to incorporate such a strong cultural element with the local Menang artwork,” he said.

“There is new lighting throughout the gardens to showcase the space at night and complement the lighting already in place around the Town Square and Visitor Centre.

“It’s a warm and welcoming space for the community and visitors that will complement the rest of the civic precinct and respects our city’s heritage.”

The project was supported with funding through Lotterwest, Great Sothern Development Commission and Department of Local Government Sport and Cultural Industries.

Lotterywest Chief Executive Officer Susan Hunt, Hon MLA Member for Albany Peter Watson, Chief Executive Officer of Great Southern Development Commission Bruce Manning and Albany Mayor Dennis Wellington formally opened Alison Hartman Gardens on Monday, October 28 at 10:30am.

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