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Charles Darwin University Education and Community Precinct
– Public Realm Activation Plan


Darwin, NT – ARM Architecture (2019 - 2020)

Categories and services:

  • Education Precincts

  • Activation Plan

A new inner-city campus that will revitalise Darwin CBD’s civic spine.

As a key component of and in line with the Darwin City Deal vision to reinvigorate Darwin’s CBD, Charles Darwin University is planning to consolidate their dispersed activities into a new state-of-the-art campus in the heart of the city. Bringing together community, education, retail and commercial facilities into a central hub, the Education and Community Precinct seeks to meet future student needs and deliver benefits to the broader community as a civic and community gathering place.


Village Well were engaged by ARM Architecture to develop a vision for the campus, and to provide strategic advice on design, programming and place management for the Campus’ public realm. 


Village Well conducted extensive local and desktop research, and engaged with CDU and local community representatives, Larrakia Traditional Owners, other Indigenous stakeholders and other user groups through a series of meetings and workshops to ensure their needs and aspirations informed the overall place identity and public experience design and programming. Village Well provided ongoing strategic advice on Concept and Schematic Design, programming and place management. The first part of this work was completed in early 2020 as part of Concept Design (refer to Darwin Education Precinct Placemaking Strategy Report, May 2020). The Public Realm Activation Plan further expands that work in response to design feedback and consultation with the same groups.


The Activation Plan recommends suitable and attractive activity and event types for the various areas within the CDU campus public realm. The Plan also identifies other activities (generally larger and for broader participation) that may be accommodated in nearby Frog Hollow Reserve, which is considered to be an integral part of the broader education and civic area of the city. 

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