This green space is on the 4th floor of an office building
Brisbane city has a few green spaces but not nearly enough for the population of office workers who head in to the CBD five days a week. Hobbs Park on the 4th floor at 480 Queen Street is a welcome innovation that provides a unique space to enjoy lunch and a break from the noise of the city with amazing views.
Hobbs Park on the 4th floor at 480 Queen Street in the city
As the park is up an escalator and located in the middle of a building you could walk past it and not even know that it is there. I had read about the park previously but only went there by chance when, walking past the building I saw a sign for the park. As I was early for an appointment I decided to head on up and have a look.
The park itself consists mostly of plants that do well in the shade. Concept drawings present the park as more of a hanging garden and over time the plants should spread out over the edges and become a beautiful city feature.
For office workers on a lunch break, one of the best features of this park is the seating and that the park is mostly under cover. The park's location then provides protection from the sun in summer as well shelter when it rains.
The view of The Story Bridge and The Brisbane River
There are also restaurants, cafes and shops in the building. You should be able to visit the park 7 days a week during both the day and evening. Being an office building there is always active security around.
The changing nature of Brisbane and Australian cities
A hanging garden in a high rise office building reflects the changing nature of the way that we live in Australia. There has been a huge growth in the number of people living in apartment buildings in central locations, including city centres.
This change has been driven by a range of factors, including empty nesters selling their house on the quarter acre block and buying an apartment, young professionals who want to live close to work and the action, international students, as well as immigrants from countries where apartment living is considered not only normal, but ideal.
As a result, city governments are rethinking their planning. Unlike the suburbs there is no space to put in parks, so they have to think vertically, often encouraging or mandating the creating of public spaces in new developments. It is unlikely that the traditional park will disappear in Australia, but new innovative spaces will come into existence that reflect our changing lifestyles.
Unfortunately the result is not always ideal. Often the development of such spaces are tied to contracts and approvals which result in commercial companies doing the minimum that they can to meet their obligations. Still, places like Hobbs Park are a great spot and a welcome addition to the CBD.