Old Dubbo Gaol Public Heritage Plaza

Summary: A public plaza, green space is being created in the centre of Dubbo.  The plaza will offer an open area for all to enjoy, from Macquarie Street to the State Heritage listed Old Dubbo Gaol in the heart of Dubbo’s CBD. The Plaza will provide exposure for the Gaol’s gatehouse entrance and Gaol wall as well as the ornate Post Office colonnade and its iconic clock tower, creating a unique civic space in Dubbo’s historical justice precinct. 

A large-scale, unique kinetic artwork will adorn the neighbouring building’s façade. The theme for the artwork was 'community, country, connection: finding common ground'.

Reclamation and development of a public heritage plaza at Old Dubbo Gaol will contribute to creating a year-round destination for visitation based on an improved and culturally-rewarding visitor experience

Development of a new public plaza in front of the State Heritage listed Old Dubbo Gaol located in the heart of Dubbo’s Central Business District, includes;

  • Landscaping and site interpretation of former historic structures which occupied the site.
  • Kinetic Artwork Screen projecting images onto the façade of the Telstra Telephone Exchange that forms the southern side of the plaza.

Key Project Progression:

  • Settlement on purchase of 92 Macquarie Street. Exchange of property occurred 1 July 2021.
  • Lease agreement for use of wall finalised with Telstra.
  • Project planning including review of project scope completed with internal stakeholders, adjacent building owners and heritage advisors Kinetic artwork specialist UAP appointed do manage the design and installation of kinetic artwork.
  • Extensive community consultation on detailed draft concept designs of the Heritage Plaza was undertaken over a five week period to ensure thorough feedback was received from all facets of community. Broad and targeted stakeholder sessions undertaken.
  • Barnson appointed to finalise plaza design in line with community feedback and budget. Environmental Design assessment also undertaken by NSW Police.
  • National art competition undertaken in partnership with Telstra to commission an Indigenous artist with a strong connection to the Wiradjuri nation one of the largest public art piece in regional New South Wales. All artists were required to adhere to a theme of community, country, connection: finding common ground. Following a rigorous process three artists were shortlisted to work with kinetic design company UAP to finalise concepts and their application in the kinetic art space. Kabi Kabi/Gubbi Gubbi & Wiradjuri woman, Dr Bianca Beetson was selected by an identified panel of community members, funding partners and arts industry representatives.
  • Tender for demolition completed and AGH Demolitions appointed.
  • Funding application for light show activation within the plaza and supportive electrical upgrades was submitted to the NSW Government Regional Growth, Regional Tourism Activation Fund. Awaiting outcome of application. This project will activate the space after sunset, projecting stories of Dubbo’s history onto the backdrop created by the walls of the Old Dubbo Gaol.

Funding: Funding available for the Heritage plaza is $5,010,614 available through the NSW Government - Regional Growth Environment and Tourism Fund and Dubbo Regional Council.  This is to include building acquisition, demolition, landscaping and interpretation, relocation of underground services and kinetic artwork

Timeline: Estimated delivery date is June 2022.

ODGPlaza_Feb2022 - Enscape_2022-01-14-15-52-08 (3)  ODGPlaza_Feb2022 -Enscape_2022-01-14-15-37-05
Image caption: Final design concepts, Old Dubbo Gaol Plaza - Barnson Pty Ltd,


Bianca Beetson concept DESTDUB_Artwork_Night3
Image caption: Kinetic artwork design concepts by day and night 

 Bianca Beetson
Image caption: Dr Bianca Beeton - artwork artist

Image caption: Fly through 3D concept, early design elements from 2019. 

Last Edited: 09 Jun 2023

Section Menu