A significant building in the middle of our city is about to cut a brand new laneway through its ground floor and create an entirely new kind of public realm for Adelaide to experience.
The 11 Waymouth Street Plaza will genuinely reshape Adelaide eating
“Back then, Waymouth Street was not perceived as part of the real city heart, at all,” says principal at Woods Bagot, Rosina Di Maria.
Rosina is playing guide to CityMag this morning as we walk around the existing footprint of the building and plaza at 11 Waymouth Street. Our other guide, manager retail leasing at CBRE, Julie Thomas, agrees with Rosina’s memory of Adelaide past.
11 Waymouth Street
Re-opening in 2020 with seven brand-new retail tenancies focusing on food and drink. Interiors will be designed by Woods Bagot and outdoor landscaping by Durie Designs. For lease information contact CBRE
“The idea was that the city would shift its axis west [from Pirie and Grenfell Streets] and connect to the Markets and the Riverbank,” says Rosina.
11 Waymouth Street (not coincidently) was designed by Woods Bagot to do just this, and Julie Thomas – through years of leasing and activating commercial property in Adelaide with CBRE and Renew Adelaide – attests to the veracity of Rosina’s claim.
“Adelaide’s population – its workers and visitors – has definitely balanced out between east and west,” says Julie. “In recent years that thoroughfare thinking that connects the Markets to Riverbank has really been activated by some clever design and excellent operators,” says Julie.
And now the property that helped shift the pendulum, 11 Waymouth Street, is at the epicentre of yet another significant change for the city experience.
Seven retail tenancies with a heavy emphasis on food and beverage will be established on the ground floor of the building. In a feat of design, each tenancy will have access to the public realm thanks to a wholly new laneway Woods Bagot have designed through the middle of the property.
“The redesign of 11 Waymouth and whole new laneway is really exciting as it’s a chance for our great local food and beverage talent to break new ground and create a whole new destination for Adelaide and South Australia,” says Julie.
“It’s all about the big and the small,” says Rosina. “It’s about the experienced barista launching their own thing as well as the serial restaurateur doing their next thing.
“Buildings need to give back to cities and activation is gold. Without activation you have a building that hosts people but it actually doesn’t breathe.
“The idea of connecting back into a laneway and actually creating our own laneway so that people can flow freely through the precinct and bring life to this whole area is something we’re really looking forward to realising here.”
The site renders Woods Bagot have provided (pictured in the slider above) demonstrate a sophisticated precinct unrecognisable from the rather drab and recently decommissioned food court that once occupied the ground floor tenancy at 11 Waymouth Street.
Julie says interest in the available tenancies has been strong and, without giving any hints, says CityMag would definitely know a few operators who’ve expressed their interest in the project.
However, through her experience with Renew Adelaide, Julie appreciates how important it is to give everyone an opportunity to participate in this project and not simply default to the usual suspects.
“Surrounded by some of the biggest corporate headquarters in Adelaide we expect operators to see value in the steady five day, morning-to-evening trade here – it’s an excellent opportunity for an emerging food and beverage operator who might be looking at their second site,” she says.
“But we are also hoping to secure iconic local bar and restaurant concepts to anchor the precinct as a destination and bring the laneway and plaza area to life at night,” Julie adds.
With the new BHP building nearing completion and an expected 2,000 workers moving into that space, plus a new hotel brand all but confirmed to develop the beautiful GPO building adjacent, this precinct really starts to take shape around the public space, smartly left by Woods Bagot when designing 11 Waymouth Street all those years ago.
For Rosina, the project is all about contributing to the city she calls home.
“Adelaide can build on its personality,” she says. “It can be bold, it can change, it can be a disruptor – I actually feel like this project will create a new neighbourhood in itself, a tiny one – a microhood maybe – full of activity and purpose from 7AM ’til 11 at night.”
Ten years ago Waymouth Street was barely the city – now it looks likely to define it.
Practical completion of 11 Waymouth Street is planned on a staged basis from early to mid-2020 and interested parties / potential tenants are encouraged to register their interest by contacting Julie Thomas or Julia Pottenger at CBRE