Roma will be the focus of 24 students undertaking their Masters of Architecture over the next five months, as they work towards developing fresh ideas to enhance the town’s CBD and streetscapes.

UQ Masters of Architecture students brainstorm fresh ideas for Roma’s CBD with UQ’s Paul Hotston, Cr Cameron O’Neil & Council’s Kym Downey

The University of Queensland (UQ) students kicked off their project last month with a visit to Roma, where they walked the streets to soak up the town’s history, chatted with residents and discussed street design with Council representatives.

Leader of the energetic group, UQ’s Paul Hotston said Roma was selected for the project because of the town’s grid scale and size similarities to the Brisbane CBD.

“We are looking at Brisbane’s CBD, the similarities to Roma and how it has evolved over the years,” Mr Hotston said.

“The students are looking for the ‘real’ Roma in this project – our aim is to build on Roma’s character and identity, to design an area that residents can enjoy for many years to come.”

Councillor Cameron O’Neil Portfolio Chair for Master Planning took part in discussions with the group and said this is a fantastic opportunity for Council to receive some new, potentially ‘out of the box’ ideas for Roma’s CBD and broader township

“They will be looking at options to improve the area’s outlook and useability for residents, local businesses and shoppers alike,” Cr O’Neil said.

“Council is appreciative of the opportunity for such a talented group to develop 24 designs for the CBD of Roma; an exercise that would be extremely costly for Council if done in the mainstream.

“We are very excited to see what the students come up with – the group is aiming, at the end of the project, to set up an exhibition and possibly a workshop, where the community can take a look at their designs.”

Council will continue working with the students over the coming months to assist them with this project.