Proposed Development on Esplanade

The future of Deckchair Cinema is under threat by a proposed development

Deckchair Cinema, one of Darwin's most iconic and loved attractions, is under threat. The Darwin Film Society has been made aware of a proposed development on the Esplanade above Deckchair Cinema. Having carefully considered the proposal, it is clear that the development would cause ongoing noise disruption to the cinema. Showing movies without noise disruption is crucial to the cinema and it is likely that the Deckchair Cinema will no longer be able to operate if the development proceeds.

The Deckchair Cinema is an iconic landmark and is part of the cultural fabric of Darwin. It attracts over 45,000 visits to the Darwin city centre each year and brings massive economic and community benefits to Darwin.

A clear mandate was set by Darwin community that development of public space should not negatively impact the cinema. In 2016 the public response to the announcement of the luxury hotel development that threatened Deckchair Cinema resulted in the decision being overturned and the development being relocated. The community understood the negative impact that the development would have on the Cinema. A clear mandate was set by Darwin community that development of public space should not negatively impact the cinema. In 2016 the public response to the announcement of the luxury hotel development that threatened Deckchair Cinema resulted in the decision being overturned and the development being relocated. The community understood the negative impact that the development would have on the Cinema.
 

Updates

18th February - Letter sent to council detailing our concerns - Link to Letter
18th February - Darwin Film Society meets with Lord Mayor
20th February - Matter taken to our members in our enews  - Link to Enewsletter
10th March - Petition to council to protect Deckchair Cinema and the Esplanade green space started - Link to Petition
24th June - Petition reaches 10,000 signatures and is presented to NT Legislative assembly by Member for Port Darwin Paul Kirby - Link.
14th July - Petition presented to the City of Darwin Council by Alderman Justine Glover
13th October - Mayor Delays the council vote - ABC News Article - ABC News Article 2
You're now up to date.

How Can I Help?

If you are concerned about Darwin losing the Deckchair Cinema, there are lots of ways you can help:

Sign our petition
•  Link to our petition - https://www.change.org/Save_Deckchair_Cinema

Contact your elected representatives
• Contact your local representatives directly with your concerns. Contact details are publicly available here - Local members | Lord Mayor | Elected Council Representatives | Candidates in the upcoming Council Election

Other ways to help
• If you have experience in Planning Law, Public Relations, Advocacy or Engaging with Government and Council and would like to help then please get in touch by replying to this email or calling the office on 08 8941 4377

What We Know About the Development

• We have been shown proposed plans for development, it comprises of;
• A two level building that would fill the current car park space
• The top floor would house an RSL club
• The bottom floor would have a restaurant or cafe
• There would be underground parking below the building
• There would be a large cantilevered decking area hanging out over the cliff
• The development would be just 80 meters behind the screen at Deckchair Cinema in the audience's direct line of sight
• The RSL are also considering other sites, including the site that they own on Cavenagh Street.

Only one location for Deckchair Cinema

Deckchair Cinema occupies a unique location that matches its complex requirements. There are many locations available for the RSL, including the large number of vacant commercial lots in the CBD. The RSL also own their previous site on Cavenagh Street and plan to rebuild there. This must be considered before jeopardizing an iconic landmark like the Deckchair Cinema.

How Noise Disturbance Impacts Deckchair Cinema

Deck Bar is roughly 230 meters away, behind a cliff and has no direct line of sight to Deckchair Cinema. We have worked with Deck Bar over the years to reduce the disruption but despite this there has been ongoing noise disturbance for our customers. The proposed development is in a direct line of sight, only 80 meters away and will be severely disruptive. 

Parliament house is the same distance away as the proposed development. When people have drinks on a balcony at Parliament House with no music, simply talking enthusiastically is enough to disrupt the patrons at Deckchair Cinema. We work with Parliament house to reduce disruption from these events that tend to happen only a couple of times a year and generally only last for 20 or 30 minutes. If the development goes ahead there will likely be disruption every night of the season.