The link between Alice Springs and Venus is a strong …

Comment on Tourism promoters sit on their hands as Alice feeds Venus transit images to the world by Steve Thorne.

The link between Alice Springs and Venus is a strong one. Charles Heavitree Todd, after whom so many features of Alice Springs are named, was most interested in setting up a network of telegraph stations so that he could follow his prime interest, that of astronomy. By the early 1880s he had organised a whole range of astronomical studies and was credited as the first person to accurately chart the orbit of Venus. He would have been thrilled with Mike Gillam’s photo. This and other discoveries led him to be awarded the KCMG and to be made a fellow of the Royal Astronomical Society. In our work preceding the revitalisation of the Todd Mall, symbols which linked to this heritage were proposed. This is outlined on the “connectingAlice” website at

Recent Comments by Steve Thorne

The gallery drama: Will there be a happy ending?
It is worth pointing out that the successful galleries you cite (Mona and Guggenheim) were both private sector initiatives.
It may be that government processes get in the way of success when it comes to delivering clarity of vision and purpose.

Indigenous art gallery centrepiece of Gunner’s plans for Alice
Let’s just hope that the design competition is not held under the jurisdiction of the Institute of Architects who limit entries to registered architects only. This project is too significant to limit entries. The government should start as it means to end – hopefully that is to be inclusive.

Fresh breeze of confidence in the CBD
Congratulations to those innovative retailers who have seen the potential to open out to Todd Street North.
The success of the vision to open the Mall and return it to a street was always dependent on close collaboration between the public and private sectors.
Congratulations also to successive Territory Governments and Town Councils who stuck by the vision in the face of sustained criticism.
I trust those who said it would never work can now see that with a bit of faith and political courage, great things are possible.

Cultural centre – think big!
Hal, That’s already been built. It’s in Canberra on the shores of Lake Burley Griffin. Steve.

Cultural centre – think big!
Hal: The really big thinking concerns the audience you are hoping to attract so that the economy and society of Alice Springs as a whole is revitalised.
While Desert Knowledge precinct is a big site, it would be out of the reach of most visitors staying in short stay accommodation in and around the town centre.
You would also be removing spin off effects for other businesses and cultural organisations in the town centre. Hobart is very different as it has population and scale to allow MONA to operate more remotely without removing social and economic energy from the city centre.
As to the design, you may have missed presentations and designs of just such a cultural centre on the Hartley Street car park with gardens, meeting place and all the rest.
This was presented publicly in 2012 by Sue Dugdale, Paul Carter and myself. Since then the ASTC and the Uniting church have attempted to obtain funding to support a further iteration of the plan.
Whatever happens, the project should be one which empowers Centralians to express themselves and showcase their creativity.
This process should be as inclusive as possible.
I hope it happens one day, as it has been talked about for a long time.

Be Sociable, Share!