The forum finds favour

Late on Friday afternoon the ABC reported that Planning Minister Matthew Guy had approved the Forum Theatre restoration and Hotel development which Urban Melbourne previously reported on back in March.

The 32 level tower will include boutique hotel suites, retail and office spaces with a pedestrian link through to Hosier Lane. Crucially it's been reported there are substantial changes to the Hosier Lane site boundary, which have been implemented in order to lessen the development's impact upon the venerable art and tourist area.

Quoted in the ABC report, Matthew Guy said "people shouldn't be concerned about any encroachment on street art, because it will virtually all remain - 99 per cent of it will still be there as it is now". The approved development has reduced the impact on Hosier Lane, and its street art precinct, from 16 metres to 3 metres, the Planning Minister said.

A subsequent report in The Age commented that Clement Stone Town Planners had successfully argued to have the Planning Minister designated as the responsible authority when the Forum Theatre and tower proposal's gross floor area is combined. City of Melbourne had opposed the plans in May this year.

Incidentally expressions of interest have been called for Paint UP Round Two, which will see a second building along Hosier Lane adorned with a large-scale painted image. While revised plans for the Forum Hotel's interaction with Hosier Lane have yet to be spotted, the original planning application provides some indication as to what can be expected, as seen below.

Original plans for an altered Hosier Lane - images courtesy of Scharp.

Development & Planning

Wednesday, December 13, 2017 - 12:00
The swirl of development activity in Footscray has found another gear as new projects are submitted for approval, or are on the verge of beginning construction. Two separate planning applications have been advertised by Maribyrnong City Council; their subsequent addition to the Urban Melbourne Project Database has seen the overall number of apartment developments within Footscray in development swell to 40.

Policy, Culture & Opinion

Monday, November 20, 2017 - 12:00
The marriage of old and new can be a difficult process, particularly when the existing structure has intrinsic heritage value. In previous times Fitzroy's 237 Napier Street served as the home of furniture manufacturer C.F. Rojo and Sons. Taking root during 1887, Christobel Rojo oversaw operations though over time the site would become home to furniture manufacturer Thonet.

Visual Melbourne

Friday, August 25, 2017 - 07:00
The former site of John Batman's home, Batman's Hill is entering the final stages of its redevelopment. Collins Square's final tower has begun its skyward ascent, as has Lendlease's Melbourne Quarter Commercial and Residential precinct already. Melbourne Quarter's first stage is at construction and involves a new 12-storey home for consultancy firm Arup along with a skypark.


Transport & Design

Friday, December 15, 2017 - 11:00
Infrastructure Victoria unveiled a new round of research into its larger programme of work dealing with managing transport demand. The authority contracted Arup and KPMG to produce the Melbourne Activity Based Model (MABM) and while it is new, it is considered fit for purpose in the strategic context.

Sustainability & Environment

Tuesday, October 24, 2017 - 12:00
Cbus Property's office development for Medibank at 720 Bourke Street in Docklands recently became the first Australian existing property to receive a WELL Certification, Gold Shell and Core rating. The WELL rating goes beyond sustainable building features with a greater focus on the health and well-being of a building's occupants.