This civic space provides visual respite from the surrounding urban environment with high quality greenery. It offers an attractive place to relax and incorporates excellent active edges which bring the space to life.
In 1997, Auckland City Council and the Newmarket Business Association commissioned Isthmus Group in association with Rewi Thompson and Kingston Morrison to develop a concept plan for streetscapes and open spaces in Newmarket, including Lumsden Green. In 1999/2000 improvements were made to Olympic Reserve and in 2000/2001 works were undertaken in Carlton Gore Road and on Broadway at the intersection of Broadway and Khyber Pass Road. Auckland City Council then committed funding for the upgrade of Lumsden Green, with a budget of $1.98 million over the 2005/2006 to 2009/2010 financial years.
A concept plan for Lumsden Green, which built on previous designs, was approved by the Hobson Community Board in March 2006. The plan sought to reinforce the identity of the park as a green oasis in the centre of Newmarket, while simplifying and rationalising the space. Design themes were derived from elements identified in the Newmarket Sense of Place document – crossroads, cabbage trees, volcanic stone, brewing industry. The park was intended to be a key focal point for Newmarket, a space for performance, gathering and relaxation. The approved concept plan was later revised as a result of design issues with retained mature trees and as a result of the need to align the design of the park with the concurrent Broadway streetscape upgrade project.
The Lumsden Green upgrade resulted in the implementation of the Lumsden Green concept plan. The scope of the Lumsden Green upgrade included:
- Footpath upgrades using feature stone paving
- Street furniture upgrades including bins, seats, cycle racks, and bollards
- Feature boulder placement
- Reinstallation of the MarteSzirmay sculpture and scroll memorial plaque
- Installation of rock and stone tiled walls
- Lighting supply and installation
- Stone kerb replacement
The completed upgrade has enhanced Lumsden Green as a destination for workers, shoppers, students, movie goers and Newmarket locals. The design ties in beautifully with the other Newmarket open space and streetscape upgrade projects (Isthmus Group were awarded for this collective design work at the 2013 NZILA Awards). The active edge to Lumsden Green has contributed vibrancy to the place, while the green still acts as an urban oasis for some peaceful respite. The less cluttered and high quality environment is now a great place to meet friends, socialise, or just to chill out, whether night or day.