Coffee drinkers have given a big thumbs-up to the first of Orange's dining booths under the Future City CBD revamp program.
People began sitting in the alfresco booth on Lords Place outside the Crema on Lords cafe on Thursday morning as workmen completed the set-up.
It occurred as the painting of the first street art destined for walls, footpaths and the roadway on McNamara Street also began.
Cafe customer Lorenzo Mastronardi said the booth was a good idea. "It's about time they had something like this. I like it, it's more comfortable."
There's plenty of room for mums and kidsSarah Blake
Nick Leslie said it was a 'cool installation.' He said it had created a relaxed environment on the road though he did get concerned when a large truck went close by.
Council poll candidate and Games N More proprietor Nic Drage backed the booth. "I think it's a fantastic idea, it looks fantastic," he said.
Mr Drage said it wouldn't work for his store but it suited food and coffee stores and said other booths could also have tables and chairs for customers.
He said there had been public concerns about the loss of parking spaces but he said that was being addressed elsewhere in the city.
Fellow candidate Sarah Blake said it would suit people of all ages. "I love it. There's plenty of room for mums and kids. It's a safe place," she said.
Orange councillor Tony Mileto said he had already had calls from cafes in other parts of the city showing interest in the booths. "There's certainly been some interest and it's positive interest," he said.
Cr Mileto said while other aspects of the Future City project had received public criticism when first announced it would be good for people to wait until some projects were completed so they could see the finished work.
Meanwhile one street away Canberra artist Yanni Pountartzis started the city's first street art project, also part of Future City.
Mr Pounartzis with assistants including Orange Regional Gallery director Brad Hammond, John Murray and Jacob Bing are painting the wall, footpath and roadway to transform McNamara Street from a backwater into a vibrant and colourful area.
He said the abstract geometric work, in shades of green depicting a view of Orange vineyards, would be done in two parts with the roadway painting done once the street was re-sealed.
Mr Pounartzis said he was using a type of paint called 'street bond' with featured a hardener, for the first time. "It's designed to be really robust. It lasts for 20 years."
He said graffiti could be easily removed if vandals tried to deface the work.
Mr Hammond said it was great to see art on the streets of Orange.
"It is hugely exciting [to have] artists locally and from further afield to create an engaging CBD. This is the beginning of a three year project."
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