TCL adding the art to infrastructure

You might not know their name, but chances are you’ve heard of, seen or even walked along their work.

Taylor Cullity Lethlean (TCL) is a leading Australian landscape architecture firm based in Adelaide and is behind some of the city’s most redefining public settings.

From the city’s heart of Victoria Square/Tarntanyangga to the Riverbank footbridge that connects thousands of sports fans with Adelaide Oval, their work has helped shape the CBD.

TCL’s senior landscape architect Alexandra Lock played a part in both of these landmarks.

But for Alexandra – an I Choose SA ambassador – designing something as significant as the 255m-long footbridge is about much more than getting people from A to B.

“It’s more than just a bridge,” she says.

“We’ve created a space that has become iconic in itself but also speaks to the scale and activity of the city.”

The Riverbank footbridge, completed in 2014, provides a vital connection to the Adelaide Festival Centre, railway station and Adelaide Oval. Its glass cladding, LED lighting and waterfall features make it a showpiece for the River Torrens.

But Alexandra’s portfolio doesn’t stop there.

The 33-year-old has worked on a number of other projects which have gone on to become highly recognised public spaces across Adelaide’s CBD and wider metropolitan areas.

When she joined TCL eight years ago as a graduate landscape architect from the University of Adelaide, her first project involved working on the masterplan and further documentation for the stage one redevelopment of Victoria Square/Tarntanyangga.

TCL senior landscape architect and I Choose SA ambassador Alexandra Lock. Photo by James Knowler / JK+Crew.

The project included an overall greening of the precinct, featuring flexible lawn for major events, extensive urban lounges, water features, and a more vibrant central plaza.

“That was a significant project for the studio but also for Adelaide in general – it is the heart of the city and was the first masterplan to be fully endorsed for the square in 40 years,” Alexandra says.

In 2015, Alex’s work on the redevelopment of another town square 11km from the city in Henley Beach was complete, featuring public furniture, terracing, shade for visitors and a “playful plaza”.

Her work also sprawls across cities and regional areas around the country.

Henley Square.

TCL was born in SA in 1989 and has an office on Grote Street in Adelaide and in Melbourne, employing a complete team of 25 people.

Its name comes from the first letter of the surnames of each of its founders, the late Kevin Taylor, Kate Cullity and Perry Lethlean.

TCL has influenced the design and layout of national parks, wetlands and gardens across the country, and also works on projects overseas.

Its local portfolio includes a collection of infrastructure, urban design and residential projects, from the Adelaide Airport pedestrian bridge and plaza upgrade, to public art along the 23km Northern Expressway.

TCL was also behind the redevelopment of North Terrace in the CBD.

North Terrace is now a greener, more open cultural boulevard.

Over the years the northern side of the premier civic street has been transformed into a more open and inviting cultural boulevard with a greater connection between the major public institutions and the open space around them.

“Beforehand, North Terrace had fences and rambling, overgrown gardens around the institutions, which blocked them off from the rest of the street,” Alexandra says.

“Views to the exceptional heritage architecture of the buildings were being lost.

“It was a big move to remove these barriers, open up the ground plane and replant with taller canopy trees. It allowed the public to filter through the university and around the museum and library, creating far better access to these institutions and reconnecting the terrace to the river.”

Alexandra says she believes the way Adelaide people engage with the public realm is becoming more important to their every day lives.

“People need to feel just as comfortable in a public space as they would in their own backyard,” she says.

“The city is developing quickly so there needs to be a focus on design quality and innovative design solutions.

“Adelaide has a lot of local talent in design, planning and in the engineering disciplines that our city is benefiting from.”

The Victoria Square redevelopment redefined the space as the city’s civic heart.

Not only is Alexandra choosing to allow her design career to flourish in Adelaide, but she’s also raising a family here.

With her second child due in October, she says she finds comfort in the city’s affordable housing market and its “small town” vibe.

And it’s this same small town community feel that holds the key to Adelaide’s success, she says.

“I think it’s going to be really important that Adelaide builds strength as a vibrant city and that we stay true to that as Adelaide continues to grow,” Alexandra says.

“It’s important that we don’t rush it and that we get it right, and I think Adelaide is quite good at getting things right.”

Visit I Choose SA for Industry to learn more stories about key industry leaders, why they’ve chosen SA as a base and how the state is enabling them to succeed.


Your guide to WOMADelaide’s market scene

Will you be one of 90,000 festival goers who dance the world away in Botanic Park at this weekend’s WOMADelaide?

The four-day open air festival is back from March 9–12, but aside from the beats, street theatre and visual artists, be sure to check out WoMade, a South Australian-only design market featuring some of the state’s best creators.

The market will showcase fashion, homewares, accessories and goodies designed and handmade locally.

WOMADelaide is one of the strongest instalments in Adelaide’s Mad March period, as almost half of attendees are interstate visitors, delivering $15.1m to the SA economy.

So do your bit in choosing SA by stopping by WoMade.

Stallholders include Bluebell Design, the Butcher Byrd, Colour This. Design and Print, Delilah Devine, Hello Cactus, Hey Reflect’o, Julie White, Naomi Murrell, One Thousand Lines, Renee Damiani Jewellery, Shanghai Lil & The Scarlet Fez, Squink, Wonder What You Were and Wrappa Reusable Food Wraps.

Here’s our top six WoMade picks:

1. Julie White 

Adelaide-based artist Julie White creates these beautiful bold and original silk scarves and specialty socks inspired by native flora and fauna, deserts and the sea.

She recently gained a Master’s in textile print at the prestigious Glasgow School of Art and her label is renowned in Adelaide fashion circles for its individuality and colour.

Julie White’s new Gone Troppo collection will have you missing summer. Big time.

2.  Naomi Murrell

Spots, soft pinks and sailboat stripes are aplenty in Naomi’s new fashion collection Paradiso.

She’s been designing clothes, jewellery and accessories since 2009, working out of a small studio on Ebenezer Place in Adelaide’s CBD.

The accessories, which include earrings, rings, necklaces and bangles, are delicate and feminine with a bright and bold twist.

3. Renee Damiani Jewellery

Just looking at Renee Damiani creations will make you feel happier.

The playful, bold and original jewellery pieces are guaranteed conversation starters and once you purchase your first pair of earrings it’ll be hard to stop.

The jewellery line is handmade from Renee’s Adelaide studio from a mix of hand-dyed plastic tubing, PVC, acrylic, plastic bubbles and polymer clay.

4. Hey Reflect’o

Finally, safety is stylish!

Hey Reflect’o is a funky cycling safety gear designer, creating vests, caps and bag covers to ensure riders can be seen when pushing pedals.

Just look for the fluorescent stall.

5. The Butcher Byrd

These leather pieces are handcrafted by Adelaide’s Sasha Carroll and made in SA from start to finish.

From soft travel bags to structured old-school backpacks, The Butcher Byrd pieces are examples of craftsmanship at its finest.

Think trusty leather satchels, totes and purses that last more than just the weekend – but a lifetime.

A post shared by Sasha Carroll (@thebutcherbyrd) on

6. Wonder What You Were

These one-of-a-kind eco-conscious accessories are festival gold.

Designed in SA, handcrafted using recycled textiles and made in Cindy Choua’s home studio, these earth-friendly clutches and zippered pouches are essential for carrying your coins, festival passes, lippy and other essentials.

Many of the fabrics are vintage inspired, mixed, and clashing – exactly how it should be at WOMAD.


Can’t wait until WOMADelaide to check out an array of local artists and makers? Head to Shop South Australia, Brand South Australia’s online marketplace.

Visit I Choose SA to find out how you can support our state by choosing South Australian businesses, products and services.

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