Alstonville is a traditional rural village located on the Alstonville plateau in Northern NSW. The village grew as many do, around a major highway and was planned to be bypassed. This provided an opportunity for Ballina Shire Council to commission a major revitalization of the village’s main street.
Design team ink was commissioned to:
• Co-ordinate formation of a community focus group and to liaise with this group and Council staff via workshops in the village centre to determine their vision (with reference to a former master plan) and an agreed palette of paving materials, furniture and finishes for the main street and urban park;
• Prepare construction drawings and specification suitable for tendering and construction;
• Co-ordinate production of community artworks; and
• Provide input into the planting design proposed by Council.
Design team ink worked with local artist, Ruth Park to determine a brief for the artworks that was consistent with the main street vision and design proposals. The artwork design and implementation process sought to involve as many local people as possible. In this regard, the artist conducted workshops with local primary school groups to engage them in a learning process where the outcome was the children’s illustrations based upon local themes. The artist then took the images and converted them into an illustration that could be further developed into a mosaic. We then contacted the local TAFE who ran an adult mosaic making certificate to create the artwork. This was a very successful process resulting in a large trilogy mosaic for Freeborn Park and a series of smaller paving panels that include reproduced photographs of the three local heritage listed buildings. Involving the people in this was has engendered strong attachment to the main street and broader village.