The City of Launceston has a series of major projects underway which intend to revitalise the municipality and boost the economy.
Read about our key projects in this section, but please contact us if you'd like more information.
Council is also embarking on an initiative to attract more people to live in the central business district, where space (particularly above shops) is underutilised. Read more on the Inner City Living Fact Sheet(PDF, 363KB) and contact our Economic Development Officer with any questions.
The Launceston City Heart Project aims to make central Launceston the premiere business, retail and lifestyle hub of northern Tasmania.
We hope the project will also cement the city's reputation as the most liveable regional centre in Australia.
Through the redevelopment of infrastructure and enhanced support for events and business capability, the project seeks to attract future private investment and to ensure there is always activity in our streets and public spaces.
It is aimed at breathing new life into our public areas and streetscapes, making it easier to find your way around and creating safer, more accessible pedestrian and bicycle links.
The project features the redevelopment of the following sites:
- Quadrant Mall and The Avenue
- Civic Square
- Brisbane Street Mall
- Way-finding Signage
- Central Business District Play Space
Read more about the project in the City Heart brochure or watch this short video:
The project was launched in 2014 with one of the largest public consultation programs ever undertaken by a local government authority in Tasmania.
More than 3000 people contributed their ideas to the development of the project's master plan, and the consultation process went on to receive a Planning Institute of Australia Excellence Award in November, 2015. A further 3000 people have been consulted since.
In May 2016 the project received a commendation at the Planning Institute of Australia's national Planning Excellence Awards in Brisbane.
In September 2016, Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull pledged $7.5m toward the project.
LCH: People, Place, Lifestyle(PDF, 23MB)
LCH Masterplan Stage 1(PDF, 15MB)
LCH Masterplan Stage 3(PDF, 17MB)
Brisbane Street Mall(PDF, 19MB)
LCH Connectivity and Wayfinding Signage Strategy(PDF, 22MB)
Where to from here
In early 2016, the City of Launceston began its first major public space overhaul with the redevelopment of the Quadrant Mall. The project involved the laying of new pavers, dynamic lighting, improved street furniture, historic interpretation, more greenery, and many other improvements.
The concept designs created for the Launceston City Heart Project Master Plan's other public space areas, like Civic Square and the Brisbane Street Mall, include new playspace attractions for families. That means we will say goodbye to the trusty talking pillows that have served in the Brisbane Street Mall for several years, and introduce new Tasmanian Tiger themed interactive sculptures.
The City of Launceston has long been linked with the Thylacine; the Tasmanian Tiger features prominently on the city's coat-of-arms.
In Civic Square, Launceston's history will be peeled back, layer by layer in an interactive playspace suitable for people of all ages and all abilities. The playspace will explore the geography of the city, the achievements of notable Launcestonians, and some of the innovations our city has introduced to the world. We will install new infrastructure and redesign some public areas to allow greater flexibility for events and public gatherings.
We will also introduce a new system of 'way finding' -- route signage that will be consistent and designed to cater for locals and visitors alike as they make their way around the city.
The Launceston City Heart Project is the largest project of its kind ever undertaken by this Council. It represents a huge opportunity for Launceston and its people, and it is only right that it has been shaped and influenced by Northern Tasmanians.
The City of Launceston would like to thank all members of the community who have provided ideas, feedback and suggestions to allow the development of the Launceston City Heart Project - without you, this initiative would not have been possible.
Please contact us if you'd like to learn more about the City Heart project.
The Launceston City Deal was signed by the Commonwealth Government, Tasmanian Government and City of Launceston on April 20, 2017. This is the state's first City Deal, and the second for Australia.
The Launceston City Deal is a five-year plan (2017 - 2022) to position Launceston as one of Australia’s most liveable and innovative regional cities.
The Launceston City Deal comprises a range of commitments under six key domains:
• Governance, city planning and regulation
• Infrastructure and investment
• Jobs and skills
• Innovation and digital opportunities
• Liveability and sustainability, and;
For more information including MoU, Snapshot and Fact Sheet, visit the Smart Cities Plan website.
The University of Tasmania (UTAS) plans to expand its current course offerings and build its student base in the state's north.
As UTAS has made clear, its Northern campus is unsustainable under the current model and redeveloping the Newnham site will be more expensive than creating a purpose-built campus at Inveresk and Willis Street.
In May 2015, the City of Launceston joined with the State Government, UTAS and TasTAFE under a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to explore the potential of an inner city campus in Launceston.
Consultation and Land
UTAS undertook a public consultation process on the proposal, and held a public meeting at the Albert Hall in October 2015.
Aldermen also extensively liaised with the community, UTAS and other Memorandum of Understanding signatories in order to identify the best outcome for the city.
In November 2015, Aldermen voted unanimously on in-principle support to transfer two parcels of land to allow this proposal to be explored further; one at Inveresk and one at Willis Street.
The Inveresk land parcel was independently valued at $1.9m, while the Willis Street car park parcel was valued at $2.6m.
The proposal could lead to a $300m capital investment on the doorstep of Launceston's CBD. Modelling from UTAS indicates that by 2025, the economic impact of relocating to Inveresk could top $290m annually.
The expansion would create a new student population who will live work and shop in Launceston.
There is no doubt the investment by the City of Launceston is significant, and there are some important pre-conditions around this transfer.
If you would like to read the pre-conditions, you can view them in the minutes from the 9 November 2015 Council meeting.
Our strategy seeks to encourage greater participation in post-secondary education by northern Tasmanians, to attract a greater number of international students through the provision of internationally acclaimed courses and gaining a greater proportion of national students travelling to Launceston to participate in flagship programs.
Coupled with the Council's Launceston City Heart Project, the UTAS Northern Expansion project presents an intergenerational opportunity to redefine the future of the city and region, as well as increasing participation rates in post-secondary education to ensure the productive capacity of our workforce.
In addition, an expanded campus at Inveresk and Willis Street will creates a new demand model in the CBD that will encourage private sector investment in Launceston.
In this context, the investment of $4.5m in land from the Council to consolidate an expanded UTAS Northern Campus near the CBD meets international best practice standards and is a responsible investment which demonstrates economic and social benefits that the Council believes are indisputable.
We detail more on our position, plus bust some myths around the proposal, here: UTAS proposal fact sheet.
The Northern Expansion proposal has been supported by the Property Council of Tasmania, which has noted:
"The reality is that the UTAS campus at Newnham is losing five per cent in student numbers per year, which when coupled with the fact that the site will be far more expensive to retrofit, encapsulates the immediate challenges that we face as a community."
The Property Council has also described the proposal as, "a once in a lifetime educational and economic opportunity which should be grasped with both hands."
The Northern expansion proposal has also been supported by the Launceston Chamber of Commerce, with the organisation saying: "The chamber is of the view that it will revitalise the CBD, and add more of a youthful culture and diversity within the city."
The State and Federal Governments have pledged financial support to the proposal.
Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has promised $150m while Tasmanian Treasurer Peter Gutwein committed $75m to the proposal.
Where to from here
Council is now awaiting a formal planning application from UTAS.
For more information about the UTAS Northern Expansion, visit here.
The purpose of the Northern Suburbs Revitalisation project is to work closely with the community to develop a strategic framework for the future of the Northern Suburbs of Launceston, with the aim of improving the social, economic and environmental wellbeing for the area. This is a planning project led by community engagement.
With respect to the focus areas, to:
- Identify strengths and assets within the community
- Identify needs of the community
- Define the community's future vision
- Develop a plan
We'll keep you up to date with developments and consultation dates.
Located in the inner city suburb of Invermay, the North Bank site encompasses riverfront parcels of land at the confluence of the North Esk and Tamar Rivers to the south of Lindsay Street, and the former light industrial and mixed use parcels to the north.
The North Bank masterplan project seeks to ‘break new ground’ in urban riverside development. By leveraging the site’s unique landscape qualities and providing a vibrant mix of land uses, quality built form and recreational opportunities, the precinct will exceed existing standards for foreshore developments in Tasmania and overseas.
The redevelopment of the North Bank area will create an exciting new precinct on the northern edge of the city, both expanding the already well-established open space network along the riverfront, and improving the connectivity and cohesive experience for the users of these spaces, places and activity centres.
Read about the North Bank Master plan here: Part 1 and Part 2.
The Greater Launceston Plan (GLP) is a community vision and evidence-based framework for the sustainable development of Launceston and its surrounds over the next 20 years and beyond.
The project was initiated by the City of Launceston through the Liveable Cities Program managed by the Commonwealth Department of Infrastructure and Transport.
The GLP embraces the Launceston municipality together with the municipalities of George Town, Meander Valley, Northern Midlands and West Tamar.
Read more here:
GLP Summary Report 1
GLP Summary Report 2
GLP Vision Statement
Aims of the GLP
The GLP is directed to achieve five principal outcomes for the participating Councils and broader communities they represent:
• Provide a unified vision and consistent policy framework to support prosperity and sustainable development for existing and future communities in the greater Launceston area;
• Provide an overarching metropolitan regional framework to coordinate planning and development in the municipalities that together make up the greater Launceston area;
•Provide a regional view of development priorities within the greater Launceston area;
• Identify key city projects to be undertaken by the participating Councils which will act as a focus for new investment and sustainable development opportunities in the greater Launceston area;
• Facilitate a consistent approach to the implementation of planning and development policy and initiatives within the greater Launceston area.
The GLP reflects the aspirations of the residents for the development of Launceston and the surrounding communities.
Based on community input, the draft GLP provides a long-term strategy for sustainable land use planning and management to inform a coordinated approach for municipal planning and investment in the greater Launceston area built on:
- A unifying greater Launceston vision
- A clear statement of strategic principles and directions that reflect National Urban Policy and best practice in regional urban planning
- The dynamics and needs of the communities that comprise the greater Launceston area
- An understanding of the land and water ecology and the conservation and heritage values that provide the environmental and cultural context for the strategy
- An understanding of the economic resources, competitive advantages and opportunities of greater Launceston
- The long-term transport needs of the region within a state and national context
For more information about the GLP, we have a range of detailed reports available. Please contact us if you'd like more detail.