Main street

The addition of the outdoor dining hub, known as a parklet, in Mt Barker’s Gawler Street is helping revive an underused strip.
The wooden, semi-enclosed structure is installed in place of two carparks and allows about 10 diners to enjoy caf meals outside without encroaching onto the footpath.
The parklet has increased vibrancy and created a glow of activity, particularly on days of good weather.
The success of the Mt Barker Council concept was realised when Sazon Espresso hosted the parklet for a year in 2016.
It was then moved to Brother Bear Wholefood Caf where it will remain for eight months before moving to another business.
The council has voted to bring a second parklet to the main street – outside Sazon – while it is also considering funding a third in 2017/18.
But the cost of each parklet is the loss of two carparks.
A lack of parking in Mt Barker’s CBD has been a sore spot for many years as it struggles to accommodate the growing number of shoppers.
The council is clearly of the view that the value of increased business outweighs the loss of carparks.
But the lost parks will not be lost forever, as the council has investigated the possibility of building a multi deck carpark near Gawler Street to free up congestion.
Overall Gawler Street traders appear to be in favor of parklets, with a council survey showing 80% of responding businesses giving them the thumbs up.
In time it might not only be Gawler Street which reaps the benefits of parklets, with Nairne’s main street also tipped as a host in the future.

Garden great

Every year, as the weather cools, the Mt Lofty Botanic Gardens puts on a dazzling display of color that could rival even some of the loveliest European landscapes.
For those lucky enough to live in the Hills, this jewel is right on our doorstep.
The gardens draw thousands of people from around SA to our corner of the world, but sometimes those closest to a thing of beauty enjoy it the least.
So why not take a walk through the gardens this year?
It may just remind you how lucky we are to live in one of the most picturesque parts of the world.