Our History

For most of the 20th century the Honeysuckle project area was dominated by railway workshops, wool stores, cargo sheds and warehouses, both active and dormant. By the late 1980s it was recognised that there had been a gradual but sustained period of decline in the number of people living and working in Newcastle, Australia’s second oldest city.

Formed by the State Government in 1992 and initially funded with $100 million from the Commonwealth/State Building Better Cities program, the Honeysuckle Development Corporation (now Hunter Development Corporation) set about working in partnership with the local community to transform 50 hectares of surplus government land.

At the heart of one of the biggest urban renewal projects in Australia was the task of opening up Newcastle Harbour to the community. By creating quality residential, commercial and recreational waterfront areas, the project unlocked lifestyle, economic and environmental benefits for the city. The project has received urban design awards and international recognition along the way.

The Honeysuckle story is an important chapter in the city’s transformation into a rejuvenated city still loaded with opportunity. Hunter Development Corporation has played an important role in the ongoing revitalisation of the Newcastle city centre, including producing the landmark Newcastle City Centre Renewal Report (2009). This work has been built upon through the 2012 Newcastle Urban Renewal Strategy 2012 (Department of Planning & Infrastructure) and the decision to truncate the heavy rail at a new interchange. An announcement that light rail would be introduced to the city centre was made in June 2013.

Discover Honeysuckle's rich history, read HDC's 20 year anniversary booklet or the Honeysuckle Interpretive Trail

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