Wait… We have a city campus?

Jack Moran, quite literally, explores the often forgotten halls of the University of Newcastle’s City Precinct.

If you’re anything like me, you might not know that the University has a campus right in the heart of the Newcastle CBD. If you’re a bit more informed about UON services and facilities than I am, you might know that the City precinct exists but you might not know what happens there. Seeking to rectify this, I boarded a bus into town and saw what our city campus is all about.

The first thing I saw in my exploration of the City precinct is the cafe. This is unsurprising as, like most students, I am often drawn to food. Nesca Café is kind of like the love-child of Mammaduke’s and Pinkies that you never knew you wanted. Not only does it sell your precious coffee and serve hamburgers, sandwiches and wraps but it also has a small selection of junk food snacks to buy like chocolate bars and chips. Nesca Café also has a collection of board games you’re welcome to play with your friends which is a nice addition.

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The second thing I noticed is that the City precinct is quiet. Admittedly, I did visit the place on a Friday but there were still plenty of computer labs and quiet study areas for you to get work done. Some of them, such as City precinct’s own Information Common, are open 24/7 during the semester. If you need to study for an exam or need to finish off an assignment without the distractions of home slowing you down, the City precinct might be just for you. Especially since you get to do it all on that sweet, free Uni Wi-Fi.

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Comfy couches and free Wi-Fi? Sign me up!

Beyond just a pretty solid place to study, the City precinct also has a great service housed there that many students might not be aware of. The second floor is home to the Newcastle Legal Centre. Not only is the Legal Centre a place for UON law students to get some practice, it’s also a resource for free legal advice on everything from social security to tenancy. You can find out way more, including contact information and drop-in times on their website.

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I  have never learnt more about my rights than I have by reading the pamphlets in the Legal Centre’s waiting room.

If the interior facilities of the place aren’t enough to attract you to the City precinct then you might want to think about what’s going on around the campus. Unlike UON’s Callaghan campus – which is unfortunately surrounded by suburbia, car park and bush land – the City precinct is right in the heart of Newcastle, meaning all of the CBD’s bars, cafes and shops are within walking distance. Not to mention that it’s across the street from Civic Park which would have to be the best place in Newcastle to spend your lunch break.

If you’re not a business, law or music student, you probably won’t need to go to the City precinct for a tutorial or lecture. That, however, doesn’t mean you can’t take advantage of the amenities that are there – especially if you live nearby.

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Most of its books are about music or law but the City precinct library is still a great place to get some work done.

All of this, of course, doesn’t take into account the NeW Space that is currently being built next door. NeW Space is an extension of UON’s City precinct that will not only have tonnes more services and facilities for UON students but will also look pretty stylish, if these graphics are anything to go by.

Images: Taken by Jack Moran.

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