Junction Place, Wodonga is currently one of Australia's largest urban redevelopment projects and was Katsieris Origami's first major urban design. The city of Wodonga is Victoria's fastest growing regional city. As well as planning for expected future growth, we recognised a unique opportunity for urban design to act as an agent of wider civic and cultural regeneration.
The site of 108,000 m2 (10.8 Hectares) was a 'brownfield' site; the decommissioned Wodonga Rail Station and rail maintenance yards located in the centre of the city. Our urban design proposed a network of new streets, roads and public spaces arranged across the 10.8 hectares linking existing urban fabric with newly created large, medium and small-scale development parcels.
Our design incorporated a major new pedestrian promenade along the former rail alignment. This handsome, linear space connected a proposed new public square with the buildings of the former heritage rail precinct; the Wodonga Rail Station building, the Wodonga Goods Shed and the maintenance yards. Though we met initial opposition, we were able to successfully advocate for the retention of the rail buildings and wove them into the urban design as signature place-making elements. These iconic red-brick structures of Victorian industrial era vintage subsequently became the first built transformations in the redevelopment and were renovated into vibrant hospitality venues with retained industrial character.
We also sought to encourage greater pedestrian activity and structure the urban design to showcase a range of commercial, retail and civic uses. In line with this, the scale of the new streets, roads and public spaces were designed to slow vehicles down as they passed through and around the development. The geometry and location of proposed future development parcels were also analysed to confirm their suitability for different building types, various heights, commercial yields and uses. A set of Urban Design Guidelines was created to guide future development on a character precinct basis.
Construction commenced in 2012 with the strategic re-alignment and widening of Elgin Boulevard followed by the new streets and roads. The construction of the new Junction Place public square and the new public promenade followed. In 2021, the project continues to be built out according to our urban design and Master Plan. We periodically visit Wodonga to closely follow the evolution of the urban design; an evolution that started wth a series of exploratory yellow-trace sketches overlaid onto a giant, conference table-sized aerial photo of central Wodonga in our Century Building studio all those years ago.
Awards: Finalist, 2016 Victorian Premier's Design Awards; Commendation, 2017 Australian National Urban Design Awards.
‘Junction Place’ Central Wodonga - Urban Design & Master Plan, Wodonga 2011 - Ongoing
Site Area: 10.8 Hectares (108,000 m2)
Clients: Development Victoria / VicTrack
Key Stakeholder: City of Wodonga
Urban Design & Master Plan: Katsieris Origami: Architecture & Urbanism
Landscape: Aspect Studio
Traffic Consultant: Cardno