2021 Darwin Street Art Festival at Aralia Street, Miss Polly

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Placemaking at Aralia Street

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Miss Polly street art
2021 Darwin Street Art Festival at Aralia Street, by Miss Polly











Activate Darwin worked with Dom's Bar to revitalise Aralia Street in 2021. The project saw great results of vibrancy, safety, and new business activity. 

Here is the Aralia Street success story:

Aralia is a residential street in Nightcliff, with a small suburban shopping strip and arcade. The arcade and surrounding strip were built in the 1970s, seeing limited work undertaken in its public space since. The concrete foundations of this strip had created a heat sink despite being one street from Nightcliff foreshore's cooling sea breeze.

In late 2019 the arcade welcomed Dom's Bar, which quickly became a quality destination for cocktails and wines.  Two years later, in early 2021, the proprietor of Dom's Bar, Dominic Wundke, contacted Activate Darwin seeking advice and guidance in making Aralia Street more attractive.

After assessing the surrounds, it became clear that greening and colour would be quick wins, so Activate Darwin worked with Dom to place a number of large concrete planter boxes outside both entrances of the Aralia arcade. Local street artist Jesse Bell was commissioned to add some creativity to the planter boxes and suitable greenery was planted, which Dom agreed to maintain. The painted planter boxes with tropical greenery had an immediate impact that "helped breathe life into this part of the precinct".

The 2021 'suburb' expansion of the Darwin Street Art Festival also created opportunity for two murals to highlight Aralia Street. The growing Nightcliff precinct immediately became a "safe and vibrant public" place as street artists Miss Polly and PRESSPlay completed their vibrant installations. 

The successful makeover has sparked further ideas of improvement, community involvement, and an influx of new businesses in the arcade and surrounding shopping strip. 

Aralia Street is "A great space that encourages people to come together". 


Aralia Arcade
No more vacant tenancies in Aralia Street Arcade
Dom's Bar
Dom's Bar arcade entrance



Aralia St. planter boxes
Aralia Street planter boxes, painted by Jesse Bell


2021 Darwin Street Art Festival at Aralia Street, by PRESSPlay



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