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Pilot initiatives announced to boost feelings of safety in Gosford

By Central Coast Council
Archived 20 Dec 2023 - Posted: 20 Oct 2023
Exciting changes are coming to the Gosford CBD in late 2023. As part of the Safer Cities: Her Way program, Central Coast Council will be delivering pilot initiatives to enhance safety perceptions across Gosford in a collaborative partnership with Transport for NSW.

These initiatives are based on what the community told us would make them feel safer when moving throughout the Gosford CBD such as lighting, public art, wayfinding, and events including six weeks of ‘Good Times Summer’ activations and weekly night markets! Additionally, Burns Place Park and William Street will undergo a quick refresh.

Central Coast Council’s Director of Community and Recreation Services, Melanie Smith said the program had an overwhelming response from the community during the recent consultation process, with over 136,000 pieces of data collected. 

“The community shared their thoughts and experiences via a survey, interactive map, in-person walk-shops and an in-person co-design workshop with community members and key stakeholders including NSW Health, NSW Police, NSW Education, Busways, Transport for NSW and Council staff,” Ms Smith said.

“The data revealed three key themes affecting perceptions of safety (vision, beautification, and activation) and three main areas that the community believed needed attention (Burns Place Park, Kibble Park, and the broader Gosford CBD).

“As a result of the engagement activities and the data collected, we’re excited to announce Council will deliver and test five key pilot initiatives towards the end of 2023 and the beginning of 2024.” 

Pilot initiatives include: 

  • Burns Place Park – The statistics told us 86% of individuals felt unsafe, and 67% also had a negative perception of this location. To enhance feelings of safety, the community recommended lighting, revitalisation, well-maintained areas and cleanliness. As a result, the following pilot interventions have been identified: lighting, vegetation management, improved lines of sight, public art and activation.
  • Kibble Park and William Street – The statistics told us 43% of individuals felt unsafe, and 53% had a negative perception of this location. To enhance feelings of safety, the community recommended encouraging increased patronage/passive surveillance, lighting and economic stimulation combined with improving lines of sight. As a result, the following pilot interventions have been identified: William St. hut removal, lighting, public art and activation.
  • Gosford CBD – The statistics told us 50% of individuals felt unsafe, and 61% had a negative perception of this location. To enhance feelings of safety, the community recommended improved lighting, revitalisation efforts, improved aesthetics, and economic stimulation. As a result, the following pilot initiatives have been identified: implementing laneway lighting, incorporating public art, creating safer connections, organising community events and promoting activations.
  • Activations – A ‘Good Times Summer’ activation will launch with a program of events across Gosford over a six-week period, commencing in December 2023. Weekly night markets will also make a comeback.
  • Wayfinding - Improved signage will be erected across the CBD to share community information on safe travels and general information.

Council Administrator, Rik Hart said he is excited to see the projects commence this year and learn what the results from the evaluation show us in 2024.

“The number of survey submissions is a testament to the community’s dedication to making Gosford feel safer. I’m excited to see the impact the pilot initiatives will have on the Gosford CBD and the flow-on effect to the region,” Mr Hart said. 

To read the consultation report, watch the video and stay up to date with this program, visit yourvoiceourcoast.com/herway

This article archived 20 Dec 2023

 
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