Locals Love It: McKeon Street Plaza in Maroubra Beach to Go Permanent

Construction is now underway to convert the temporary McKeon Street Plaza in Maroubra Beach into a permanent public space, after an overwhelmingly positive community response to the initial trial last year.

Read: Shared Space Trial At McKeon Street In Maroubra Encourages People To Use Public Spaces More

The section of McKeon Street was first closed to vehicles in October 2022 on a trial basis, creating a vibrant community hub supporting local businesses with programmed events like farmers markets, live music, and movie screenings.

Randwick Mayor Dylan Parker said the trial received highly enthusiastic feedback from locals. “A permanent plaza in the heart of Maroubra Beach will be a welcoming space for the community to spend more time socialising and supporting local businesses,” he stated.

Aerial view (Photo credit: Randwick City Council)

The new permanent design incorporates suggestions from community consultations, with 85 percent of respondents supporting making the plaza permanent. Locals expressed a desire for a revitalised public area fostering community spirit, active lifestyles, and celebrating the coastal character of Maroubra.

New seating (Photo credit: Randwick City Council)

Features of the upgraded permanent plaza will include a performance stage, increased shade and seating, community garden beds, indigenous coastal plantings, and public art installations. Access will be maintained for local businesses throughout construction.

The 6-month trial of the McKeon Street Plaza was funded through a grant from the NSW Government’s Streets as Shared Spaces program

The initial trial period concluded on March 31, but Randwick City Council voted on March 28 to extend the trial to allow time for additional community consultation and evaluation of potential long-term plans for the space.

Read: New Pedestrian-Friendly Masterplan For Maroubra Unveiled

The Maroubra Beach community is eagerly anticipating the completion of the new McKeon Street Plaza, expected by late September 2023. Mayor Parker encouraged locals to continue visiting Maroubra’s cafes and shops during construction, saying their support of local businesses is greatly appreciated.

Published 25-August-2023

Free Sunset Silent Cinema Debuts at the New McKeon Street Plaza

Photo Credit: CrDavidRosenfeld/Facebook

Did you know that McKeon Street Plaza will be debuting a series of FREE Sunset Silent Cinema events at the newly opened public space? 

Launching on Saturday, 30th of October 2022, the Sunset Silent Cinema will open with a spooktacular family-friendly movie featuring Disney’s “Hocus Pocus” at 7:00 p.m. 

Prior to the film’s showcase, an opening ceremony will take place at 6:15 p.m. and things will get a lot more spine-tingling by 9:00 p.m. when the first “Scream” film will be showcased at the event.

However, the fun does not stop with Halloween as Sunset Silent Cinema will run with two movies for November 2022, January 2023 and March 2023. Here’s the schedule for the upcoming movies: 

Film DateTime
The GrinchSaturday
26 November 2022
7:00 p.m.
Love ActuallySaturday
26 November 2022
9:00 p.m.
28 January 2023
7:00 p.m.
Point BreakSaturday
28 January 2023
9:00 p.m.
Minions: Rise of GruSaturday 11 March 20237:00 p.m.
The Lost CitySaturday 11 March 20239:00 p.m.

Currently, free ticket reservations are limited to 50 people but Council advised there may still be opportunities for other locals to watch the movies if there are no-show guests 15 minutes before the start of each program.

Ticket holders are allowed one beanbag and one set of headphones. The headphones only work within the cinema space and are not compatible with Bluetooth. Ticket holders are required to check in upon their arrival at the event.

This is strictly an alcohol-free event. Smoking is not permitted under any circumstances within the cinema space. 

McKeon Street Plaza officially opened on the 8th of October 2022 following years of planning under the NSW Government Shared Spaces Program, aligning with Randwick City’s Economic Development Strategy. 

McKeon Street Plaza Design
Photo Credit: RandwickCityCouncil

McKeon Street Plaza To Open for 6-Month Trial

Heads up, Maroubra locals! The McKeon Street Plaza will be open beginning the 8th of October 2022.

The temporary public plaza will be open for a six-month trial period, during which the area between Marine Parade and Fenton Avenue will be closed to cars and opened to the community for shopping, dining, and other activities.

“This is an opportunity to prioritise people and our local businesses. Creating a plaza on McKeon Street will provide more opportunity for visitors and locals to stay in the area and enjoy the beautiful beachside suburb of Maroubra, while also spending time at the local businesses and outdoors,” Mayor Dylan Parker, who will officially launch the public plaza, said.

Once opened to the public, the McKeon Street Plaza will feature new landscaping, outdoor furniture and public art. And from launching up to the end of March next year, local entertainment and music will delight visitors every Saturday as well.

The six-month trial is funded through a $500,000 grant from the NSW State Government as part of its Street as Shared Spaces (Round 2) initiative in partnership with Randwick City Council.

“The community and local businesses were consulted on this project and the responses were very supportive,” adds Mayor Parker.

Mayor Dylan Parker talking about the new public plaza at McKeon Street, Maroubra in May 2022

Based on the feedback collected from the community consultation, an overwhelming majority or 87 per cent agree that the area will benefit from the pedestrianized public space. Moreover, 86 per cent said that they agree or strongly agree that people would visit or stay longer in the public space if it was well-designed.

To address concerns about the loss of parking, Council will create an angled parking area on Fenton Avenue, resulting in 29 new parking spaces or a net gain of 15.

“Overall, the objective is to strengthen the vibrancy of the area, enable more day and night activity, and encourage more walking to and from the area while preserving the area’s unique local character and identity.