“Here the tide ceased to flow and all further progress for boats was stopped by a flat space of large broad stones over which a fresh water stream ran.” Surgeon John White (with Governor Phillip in search of good farmlands and place for the new settlement). 24th April 1788.
‘Freshwater Square’ is the original junction of fresh and salt water. It is a place of change and oppiositions: Fresh Water- Salt Water, River – Ocean, Darug – European, Old World – New World
Where the natural landscape of Parramatta Park and the river meet the urban order of the CBD. Natural- Urban Organic – Rectilinear.
The central element of River City Square is a rock pool, expanded from the current water area where naturally shaped “large flat stones” are combined with pure circular forms. The Rock pool can be walked across, wandered through, paddled in and sat around. The water level changes according to the tides, as it cascades down over a range of pools, playing with the level change between the water above the Marsden St weir, to the river level below. It can also be drained to low level for a special event where more space is required. The ‘Gorge’ is a trafficable building, which will be the entertainment focus of Parramatta.