17 April 2023
The rejuvenation of Bottle Alley, connecting Nicholas Street to the Top of Town, is placing the alleyway back in its original role as a key link between Ipswich’s retail precincts.
The heritage thoroughfare has been a quick shortcut for pedestrians for more than 160 years and has now been given new life with a major mural, drawing more visitors through the alley between Ellenborough Street and Nicholas Street.
Ipswich Central Redevelopment Committee Chairperson Councillor Marnie Doyle said it was positive to see the mural in Bottle Alley contributing to the vision that Ipswich Central is the cultural hub and beating heart of the Ipswich community.
“Bottle Alley was at the heart of Ipswich’s daily life, with the Whitehouse Café situated close by and the alley overlooking the city’s busy railway line,” Cr Doyle said.
“It was a direct link to iconic retail outlets such as the original T.C. Beirne department store, Fleischmanns Saddlers, and Hoopers, on Ellenborough and Brisbane streets.”
Now, as the Nicholas Street Precinct develops into the entertainment and lifestyle hub of Ipswich, boutique businesses in the Top of Town are enjoying the benefits.
Top of Town business owner Glen Smith, of antique store The Vintage Advantage, said Bottle Alley’s revitalisation with a spectacular new mural would allow people to park in the Nicholas Street Precinct, explore and then make their way to the boutique shops on Brisbane Street.
“Foot traffic is the lifeblood of small business, and restoring Bottle Alley to its rightful place as a key link between Top of Town and the precinct is a welcome step forward in connecting and revitalising Ipswich’s city centre,” Mr Smith said.
Oh! JoJo Boutique business owner Jo Hart said the steady revitalisation of Ipswich Central was critical for small businesses to thrive.
“Bottle Alley being reopened with a beautiful new mural will help attract people from Nicholas Street through to Ipswich’s vibrant Top of Town precinct, where we have so many diverse shops, cafes, and eateries,” she said.
“Small businesses are critical to Ipswich’s future, and ensuring our city centre is connected, fresh and attractive is one part of supporting that future.”