Cars in Todd Mall again?


The northern section of Todd Mall (photo above) may be opened up for vehicle traffic again in a bid to breathe life into that part of the CBD.
This would result in Alice Plaza businesses, currently accessible mostly from the interior of the shopping centre, being open to the mall as well.
Alice Springs News Online understands this is part of CBD revitalization proposals due to be made public by the Town Council in about two weeks’ time.
Under consideration is the entire mall and the part of Todd Street to KFC at the southern end.
“Traffic calming” is suggested for where the mall feeds into Wills Terrace and Gregory Terrace, the scene of frequent prangs. Traffic in those two locations would be slowed down and pedestrian friendly areas created.
Footpaths would be widened in Todd Street between KFC and the mall.
One suggestion is to have vehicle traffic from Parsons Street turning north through the mall to Wills Terrace.
This would enhance the sails area – already a natural meeting place – by becoming a vehicle drop-off point as well.
Two-way traffic in the northern mall does not appear to be favoured.
It is suggested that the changes to the mall would be complemented by a town square on the site of the Town Council owned Hartley Street car park, linked to the mall through an enhanced public space around Flynn Church and Adelaide House.
The source says the town square could incorporate shops, parking and even residential uses, most likely in two or more story developments.
The council is treating the proposals as confidential at the moment.
Representatives from the NT Government, which has allocated $5m to the revitalization, are due to give a presentation to the council on September 27, the News understands.
According to Stuart Traynor’s Alice Springs Time Line, Todd Street was turned into a semi-mall with one-way traffic in 1978.
The semi-mall at that time was affectionaltely known as the Small.
In 1987, according to Mr Traynor, Todd Street become a full mall.
The photograph (below) shows Todd Street from the north looking south in the 1960s.
The photograph, supplied to us by Barry Allwright, comes from the Bill and Daphne Vivian Collection, Central Australian Historical Images, Alice Springs Public Library.


  1. What, yet another proposal to open up the north end of Todd Mall to traffic? It’s almost as repetitive as the proposal to sell off public parks.
    My goodness, how we love spinning our wheels bogged in the dirt, going nowhere very fast!
    I remember very clearly how Todd Street changed to a semi-mall and then to a mall. I have a newspaper article published in the early 1980s which reported how businesses in Todd Street were opposed to the development of a mall but in those days it was all the rage across Australia to build malls; and our civic leaders and top bureaucrats, in all their infinite wisdom, weren’t going to be deflected from their course.
    Alice Springs was going to have a mall, regardless. Two months after its official opening in 1987, the front page headlines were of crime and anti-social activity running rampant in Todd Mall, and by 1992 there were calls for CCTV coverage for security purposes.
    Now we face the prospect of public money being spent – yet again – to do something about all the stuff-ups we were warned of in the first place.
    The history of maladministration and ineptitude of bureaucrats and politicians at both local and Territory government levels, as encapsulated in the history of Todd Street / Mall – all post NT Self-government – can give no one any confidence that they will somehow miraculously make the right decsions now.

  2. What would Alice have left to enjoy? A walk down the Todd Street mall is something to enjoy. Take that away and have no walking traffic. Or shoppers that would stop into any of the shops. What’s left is just the drop in driver to get what they need and then they are gone. Please see the peace of the Todd Mall.

  3. It’s interesting to read this article almost five years after it was posted, read the grandiose plans envisaged, and then look at the reality of what we have had delivered to us.
    You could very easily argue the opening up of the Northern end of the mall has accomplished nothing tangible. We have three carparks outside the pharmacy and bank, a bus drop off point that I have yet to see a bus in, and now with Westpac gone there is even less reason to go up that end.
    Who were the geniuses that said this would invigorate the mall?

  4. I could fix Todd Street in one day … with two of my mates and their latest equipment.
    And get the beautifully vibrant Town Called Alice that we all cherished back while all you over educated leftard pansies sit on your pink butts living off real taxpayers’ money.
    Don’t bother to have a go at me as you all bloody well know I am correct … and deaf.

  5. I imagine your gonna take it back to the days of the Stuart Arms when there were shops and life on the street before the money hungry developers came and trashed it by building the Ford Plaza. Might take more than a day but.


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