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Oxford Street is a major thoroughfare in Sydney, Australia running from Whitlam Square on the south-east corner of Hyde Park in the central business district of Sydney to Bondi Junction in the Eastern Suburbs. Close to the CBD in particular, the street is lined with numerous shops, bars and nightclubs. In recent years, Oxford St has garnered a reputation as Sydney's primary nightclub strip, and has subsequently seen a large increase in the number of crimes committed in the area.
The western section, which runs through the suburb of Darlinghurst, is widely-recognised as Sydney's main gay district and Oxford Street is closed to traffic once a year in early March for the world famous Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras. The section to the east of Taylor Square, running through the suburb of Paddington forms an upmarket shopping strip, noted for fashion, gifts and homewares, and represents the home of the new medical faculty of the University of Notre Dame Australia as well as the University of New South Wales' College of Fine Arts, Victoria Barracks, Paddington Bazaar and St Vincent's Hospital, Sydney amongst other locations.
In May 1909 the Sydney Council resolved to widen Oxford Street from 66 ft to 100 ft by resuming the entire north side of the street between Liverpool and Bourke Streets. The project was carried out in five stages between 1910 and 1914. The result was a new boulevard and the creation of a "federation" streetscape which remains today largely intact.