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Opinion

Unlocking the public interest

In January a review by former police commissioner Neil Comrie found that the Melbourne Youth Justice Centre (MYJC) in Parkville was no longer fit for purpose. The facility which first opened at the site in 1955 has now reached the end of its useful life as a juvenile detention centre. With the Victorian government now planning a new purpose built facility in Werribee, the future use of the site has become uncertain. For those unfamiliar with the...

The Queen Victoria Market Renewal Project: The Case for

As part of the enabling stage of the Queen Victoria Market Renewal Project, the City of Melbourne has finally revealed their plans for the former Munro site, to be developed by PDG Corporation into a mixed-use development comprising a 58-storey Bates Smart designed-tower of 308 dwellings and a 300-room hotel, after the developer was awarded the rights to develop the site on CoM's behalf. The Council will sell the site known as Lot B (refer plan...

Rise of the microbrewery, fall of the pub and the demise of Melbourne's historic built form

It seems many of inner Melbourne's pubs are in trouble. Times have changed, but more specifically the core demographic, entertainment options and the city itself have changed. Long gone are the days where the corner pub was the staple (and in some cases the only) option of previous generations; Melbourne is now a 24 hour city with a multitude of entertainment options. And so in this respect it should come as no great surprise that many of inner...

Dear Malcolm, let's talk about a city deal for Fishermans Bend

Dear Prime Minister, I note that your government is keen to get the concept of 'City Deals' up and running in Australia, with the recent focus on Western Sydney, the Emerald City's second airport and associated infrastructure. I would like to draw your attention toward the ongoing planning work underway in Victoria; the redevelopment Fishermans Bend as well as the large-scale upgrades to Melbourne's rail network. Our state government released...

Calculating the cost of the new Better Apartments Draft Design guidelines

The proposed apartment standards will add $62,500 to the construction cost of each apartment. The attached document below illustrates our calculations for each of the standards. The cost of each standard is calculated by multiplying the construction rate with the increased area of each item. None of the standards are for free. They all come at a cost. The yield of each site will also decrease by 20% to 40% as a result, with the impact on...

Winter Escape Episode III: Dublin

Dublin was a city that really impressed me, particularly for its size and with little reliance on major landmarks unlike other cities. It's relatively flat, much like Melbourne and very walkable. It's airport in particularly the relatively recent T2 is also quite impressive: clean, modern and generally easy to navigate around. Again the Airlink bus service is once again probably your best bet for traveling into the city centre. The next day I...

Winter Escape Episode II: Edinburgh

Upon my arrival early on a Sunday morning, Edinburgh greeted me with the kind of weather I thought I had left behind back in Melbourne. Grey skies, 14 degrees and light drizzle. This was in stark contrast to the 45 plus degrees I had encountered in Abu Dhabi only a day earlier. While my initial impressions were of a grey city, with grey skies there was definitely more to Edinburgh than 50 shades of grey, which I discovered over the course of two...

Apartment standards: $145K extra and it's not about the size

If all of the apartment standards being considered are brought to Melbourne, apartments will cost approximately $115,000 to $145,000 more. Perhaps the most misunderstood aspect of this, is that the proposed increase in apartment sizes means an additional $15,000. Where then does the extra $100,000 come from and what is contributing to this spike in price? Working with Rider Levett Bucknall, the global property and construction practice...

Federal election aftermath: the changing face of Melbourne's (federal) electoral map

Having fun yet? Saturday's federal election has delivered a result that loosely tracks what all the polling was saying right up until July 2nd and now the waiting game - similar to the election back in 2010 - begins. The Australian Electoral Commission (AEC) put out a media release on Sunday stating that counting will continue once postal and absentee votes are returned to the respective electorates. This is likely to occur on Tuesday (July 5)...

Winter Escape Episode I: Abu Dhabi

The first stop on my six week break happens to be Abu Dhabi. The temperature on the first day reached a maximum of 48 degrees which was not ideal for someone who prefers discovering cities on foot. I also knew that I would be visiting during the holy month of Ramadan which made it difficult to remain hydrated when outdoors. These factors also contributed to fairly quiet streets and attractions, with tourists steering clear and locals who are...

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Development & Planning

Thursday, April 27, 2017 - 08:00
The local student accommodation market has a new provider as Blue Sky Private Real Estate and joint venture partner Goldman Sachs ramp up their Melbourne presence. Months after being formed, Atira Student Living has hit the ground running in Melbourne. Already active across the Brisbane market, Atira is planning a further 4,600 beds split between Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne and Adelaide.

Policy, Culture & Opinion

Thursday, April 27, 2017 - 12:00
In January a review by former police commissioner Neil Comrie found that the Melbourne Youth Justice Centre (MYJC) in Parkville was no longer fit for purpose. The facility which first opened at the site in 1955 has now reached the end of its useful life as a juvenile detention centre.

Visual Melbourne

Wednesday, February 22, 2017 - 07:00
Once again Melbourne has turned it on for the spectacular cultural juggernaut that is White Night. A crowd of around 600,000 took part in the all night festival of projections, performances, artworks and installations. Stealing the show again this year was the extraordinary projections upon the Royal Exhibition Building.

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Transport & Design

Wednesday, April 26, 2017 - 12:00
Comment The clock keeps ticking. And it's not going away anytime soon. I'm of course talking about land transport to and from Melbourne Airport, or more to the point our over-reliance on the road network to transport both passengers and employees to and from the airport terminals and the many businesses located nearby.

Sustainability & Environment

Tuesday, March 14, 2017 - 13:00
Victoria Walks, a walking promotion charity supported by VicHeath, is leading a crowdsourcing initiative that is supported by the State Government and 14 councils. The campaign aims to collect and analyse opinions on walking right across the Melbourne metropolitan area. The authorities are asking people to indicate their walking safety concerns through an interactive online map on CrowdSpot's platform.