Engaging with community, listening to what you have told us and then turning your suggestions into actions is a continuous process. We recently kicked this off with our first community consultations from 1 March to 30 April 2022. We then got back in touch from 15 August to 4 September 2022 to check to see if there were any gaps or issues that you wanted to tell us about.

You highlighted that COVID-19 lockdowns forced us all to live more locally and that these amenities are even more important to you. You told us what you value in your communities, what the challenges and opportunities are and suggestions for shaping and planning the future together.

The priorities listed here reflect the great diversity of voices in the neighbourhood and are the beginning of a cycle of listening that is endorsed by Council’s Neighbourhood Planning Framework.

We’ve listened to you and heard you. We will continue to listen to you and expect over time for recurring themes to emerge and for these local priorities to grow and change. This portal will regularly update what is already happening and what areas we will be exploring further.

  • Aboriginal Melbourne

    For the Wurundjeri, Bunurong, Taungurung, Dja Dja Wurrung and Wadawurrung peoples of the Eastern Kulin, the place now known as Melbourne has always been an important meeting place and location for events of political, cultural, social and educational significance. We will ensure that the Traditional Owners’ culture, lore, knowledge, and heritage enrich the city’s growth and development.

Embrace the wisdom of Aboriginal Traditional Owners to enrich our shared experience of place.

What you told us

You’d like more recognition of Wurundjeri Traditional Owners and other First Nations’ relationships with the lands, waterways and storylines of this neighbourhood.

You suggest this process could begin with greater use of the Wurundjeri Woi-wurrung language in place names and signage, partnering in decision-making, local storytelling, native planting, and plaques of acknowledgment of Aboriginal history in parks and community facilities.

“We should incorporate Indigenous naming and knowledge. Consult early and consistently and actually LISTEN to Aboriginal expertise: prioritise their knowledge.”

“Historical information about the pre-colonial era should be visible, and plaques about post-colonial buildings should not suggest that "nothing" was there before.

"Council should keep improving on the great initiatives like the featuring of First Nations knowledge in Melbourne Knowledge Week and supporting festivals like YIRRAMBOI.”

“I would love to know more about the First Nations history of Melbourne - it's great seeing rising use of place names, would love to see more art, more signed places of interest, maybe even walking or heritage tours.”

What we’re doing

At this year’s narrm ngarrgu | Melbourne Knowledge Week we launched Mapping Aboriginal Melbourne a spatial mapping tool highlighting places and events of Aboriginal cultural significance within the city.

An interactive map is located in Town Hall Commons and available in desktop and mobile versions. This educational resource has been developed with the Wurundjeri Woi-wurrung Cultural Heritage Aboriginal Corporation and the Bunurong Land Council Aboriginal Corporation and supports Council in placemaking and signage.

Through this, we will continue to document places of Aboriginal cultural significance that can be searched by place, date or theme. This complements our Aboriginal Engagement Protocol and (Innovate) Reconciliation Action Plan 2021 – 23.

The North Melbourne Meat Market is home to YIRRAMBOI festival’s planning and hosts many of the events over the ten-day festival. Other contemporary performances by first Nations artists are commissioned for public audiences at Arts House, in the old North Melbourne Town Hall.

Our Creative Spaces program is supporting a free pop-up tenancy at shop 54 Errol Street to Amber Days’ and Yarn Strong Sista. Other NAIDOC and National Reconciliation Week events are promoted to the broader community through our popular What’s On social media marketing channels.

If you want to become more familiar with Aboriginal history and living culture, check out this reading list of books by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander writers. You can borrow all the books from our libraries.

What we’re doing next

The North Melbourne Heritage Review Planning Scheme Amendment (C403) will be presented for public exhibition early 2023, to better protect and celebrate the places and character which are unique to the neighbourhood. Consultation with Traditional Owners has identified some places and themes of special Aboriginal significance.

Returning from 4 – 14 May 2023, YIRRAMBOI will again invite audiences to immerse themselves in Aboriginal stories and culture.


[February 2023] Wurundjeri Woi-wurrung Elder, Uncle Dave Wandin, shares the importance of understanding an Acknowledgment of Country and how to deliver it with respect.

[February 2023] Find out more about Melbourne’s Traditional Owners and Aboriginal peoples’ deep connection to Country.

[February 2023] Monday 13 February marked the 15th Anniversary of the National Apology to the Stolen Generations. As part of the ongoing work towards reconciliation, we are in the process of acknowledging, recognising and paying tribute to the Stolen Generations by establishing a marker within the municipality. The Victorian Aboriginal Community – including those who are part of the Stolen Generations and their families – are invited to provide feedback on three potential shortlisted marker locations.

  • Access and affordability

    We will reduce economic and social inequality by ensuring universal access to housing, core services and information.

Increase access to local swimming pool and community spaces to encourage regular programs and events.

What you told us

You would like access to multi-purpose spaces, which are inclusive, simple to book, well managed, and prioritise local community use. You believe this would enable more group activities, performances and events.

You’d also like the North Melbourne Recreation and Aquatic Centre to increase its opening hours and explore opportunities to build an additional indoor pool for swimming lessons, hydrotherapy and women-only sessions.

“The pool could have women-only days for women who can't go swimming when men are there, water aerobics stuff for older residents, swimming lessons.”

“Creative black box space (affordable to hire and able to be reconfigured internally to suit purpose) - artists to practice and perform. Can be used for community hall facility to hire for functions of all sorts. BBQ space included. Outdoor sports area attached for kids and community to use with weather protection - tennis/table tennis/volleyball for example.”

“A cultural venue where you can find all the people represented and express culture, learn, see local artists.”

What we’re doing

The popular North Melbourne Library in Errol Street invites small community groups to book its Hotham Room for meetings and gatherings. The Jean McKendry Neighbourhood Centre on Melrose Street is a centre for older adults with multipurpose activity rooms that are available for regular and casual bookings.

North Melbourne Community Centre also has indoor and outdoor group activity spaces which are available for hire.

Our new Active Melbourne Strategy has a strong focus on enhancing inclusion and access, as has our partnership with local organisations such as the North Melbourne Huddle and The Centre neighbourhood house.

In 2020, we commissioned a North Melbourne Social Infrastructure Study to consider the long-term community and recreation facility needs of our growing community.

What we’re doing next

We have budgeted $20m for the redevelopment of North Melbourne Community Centre, which will be designed in consultation with local community and other stakeholders.


[February 2023] We are continuing our mission to alleviate period poverty with the extension of our free period care pilot program until 30 June 2023. Since the launch of the trial in September 2021 more than 6,700 period care products were dispensed from vending machines across six Council-owned facilities at: Library at the Dock, City Library, Carlton Baths, Melbourne Town Hall public toilets (on Collins Street), North Melbourne Community Centre, and Kathleen Syme Community Centre.

[February 2023] Our libraries have recently launched their own Disability Inclusion and Accessibility Plan with action to improve accessibility to our libraries, services and resources.

[February 2023] We are embedding equity of access and inclusion across our tourism services, programs, events and information. We have worked with Guide Dogs Victoria to implement virtual beacon technology to aid people with vision impairment in navigating Swanston Street and Bourke Street. We are also investigating improvements to our tactile street signage across the city.

[February 2023] Our neighbourhood centres for older people including Jean McKendry Neighbourhood Centre are undertaking the Dementia Friends program, which provides training about dementia, the challenges faced by people living with dementia, and how to help people with dementia remain connected. The centres are being reviewed using Dementia Australia's environmental checklist, in consultation with people living with dementia. We are developing an action plan for the centres to better meet the needs of people living with dementia.

[February 2023] We rolled out a quiet room at the North Melbourne Town Hall (Arts House) with soft furnishings.

Better bus and tram conditions including additional neighbourhood stops, and car-parking options that balance the needs of all users.

What you told us

You believe the area could be better connected if there was an additional bus stop on the route 501 bus line near the Errol Street Precinct. You’ve called for more modern trams and stops, as well as consistent security patrolling on the number 57 tram route.

You also told us that car-parking provision and conditions need to better balance visitor convenience with resident’s needs.

“I have often felt unsafe on the 57 tram. My housemate and I have both been followed home off the tram before.”

“I would like parking in the area to be more fairly allocated—your right to park somewhere shouldn’t depend on what year your home was built or where you live. It’s so unfair for small business owners, visitors, and people who live in new apartments.”

“Better trams - we only get the old ones… Keep car parks close to curbs the floating carparks are ridiculous and dangerous for getting children and the elderly out of cars (with prams and mobility devices) as well as cyclists.”

What we’re doing

The Victorian government’s Department of Transport is responsible for the delivery of public transport and improvements to stops, services and security. We highlight community feedback and advocate for improvement to these bus and tram routes.

Our Macaulay Structure Plan commits to advocate for improvements to the Upfield line, upgrades to Macaulay and Flemington Bridge stations, and increasing the frequency of train, tram and bus services in the area.

What we’re doing next

We will commission a neighbourhood-wide Parking and Traffic Study in early 2023 to inform future urban planning.

Metro Tunnel’s Arden Station is due for completion in 2025 and will connect passengers on the Sunbury Line to the Central City with more trains more often. In 2029, North Melburnians will be able to jump on a train from Arden to Tullamarine Airport via Airport Rail in under 30 minutes.


[February 2023] We are working on a study which identifies a range of road safety and pedestrian improvements projects in Kensington and North Melbourne. We convened a community reference group for each of these neighbourhoods to inform this work. Further consultation with the broader community to help prioritise projects will take place over February – March 2023.

[February 2023] We’re working to deliver protected bike lanes along Macaulay Rd and Arden St and expect to consult with community shortly to help finalise these plans.

[February 2023] Raised zebra crossings have been installed at the roundabout of O'Shanassy St and Errol St, North Melbourne, resulting in safer pedestrian movements. Construction completed December 2022. Work is continuing to upgrade to permanent lighting to replace the temporary lighting.

[February 2023] Work is continuing on the roll-out of 40 km/h speed limit along Arden St, Abbotsford St and Victoria St, North Melbourne. We’re collaborating with Department of Transport and Planning (DTP) for modifications to traffic signals.

[February 2023] We’re working with the Department of Transport and Planning to inform its evaluation of the e-scooter trial and decision on the legalisation of e-scooters. The Victorian Government extended the trial until 31 March 2023. To date there have been more than 3 million e-scooter trips across the city as part of the trial, many of which are replacing car trips and providing increased access to city attractions.

[February 2023] We’re collaborating with other nearby councils as part of M9 to develop actions that encourage more people to ride. We supported Ride to Work Day activities in October that showed an increase in bike and scooter users by 48 per cent compared to 2021.

[February 2023] Major construction of the Metro Tunnel is continuing around the Arden Station precinct. Find out more at Victoria's Big Build.

Ensure people can continue to call North Melbourne home, by advocating for more public housing and other affordable housing options.

What you told us

You’re concerned about the rising cost of living, particularly the affordability and availability of housing in the neighbourhood. You believe it’s important for equity and community diversity that people living on lower incomes can continue to call North Melbourne home.

You have called for greater government investment in social housing stock, financial assistance, as well as exploring creative ways to influence the private market to provide affordable housing options.

“I'd like to see more affordable housing; social housing and low-cost rental.”

“The cost of living in North Melbourne will preclude many of the current renters from living here. Only solution is a quota on the amount of public and social housing that is required for development to continue.”

“I think the local government should work to stop increased prices forcing people out - especially residents... I think affordable housing and rent for small businesses is essential for the future of North Melbourne - so it doesn’t lose what makes it so special.”

What we’re doing

Our Homes Melbourne works with Government, the community sector and private industry to deliver on our Affordable Housing Strategy 2020-2030.

We are represented on Community Consultative Committee for the Abbotsford Street public housing redevelopment project and will continue to advocate for the community.

We have recently consulted with the local community regarding the potential repurposing of land at 44 - 60 Curzon Street, North Melbourne for affordable housing.

We are seeking authorisation from the Minister for Planning to publicly exhibit Amendment C417 to the Melbourne Planning Scheme, which would require all new buildings developments within the Macaulay urban renewal precinct to dedicate a mandatory 3.8% of all floor space for affordable housing. For land owned by City of Melbourne, that rate will be at least 25%. It is estimated that this will generate around 425 new affordable homes in Macaulay.

Redevelopment in the Arden urban renewal precinct over the next twenty to thirty years provides an exciting opportunity to deliver a lot of new and diverse housing opportunities close to jobs and a major transit hub.

We're working closely with the Victorian Government to ensure at least 10% of new housing delivered on State-owned land will be allocated as affordable housing. The proposed Amendment C407 to the Melbourne Planning Scheme would require all new private residential buildings to contribute toward affordable housing.


Increase opportunities for local leadership, volunteering, and meaningful consultation.

What you told us

You told us that residents, businesses and visitors are deeply invested in the future of North Melbourne and want to be involved in decisions that shape the neighbourhood’s environment and amenities. You’re also interested in playing a more active role in local leadership or contributing your skills, time and passion through volunteering.

“Consultation and listening instead of offering what you assume is needed. Communities know what they need.”

“A true and more consultative inclusive process across all planning.”

“Creating ways for people to participate, contribute and cultivate community. For example, it is really hard to volunteer to look after Royal Park.”

What we’re doing

Our Community Engagement Policy shows our commitment to involving those most impacted by Council decisions and activities to be involved in the planning and thinking.

Recent examples of public consultation projects in North Melbourne include, Making Errol Street Exceptional, Proposal to Sell Four Council Properties, Participate North Melbourne, and Gardiner Reserve Public Toilet.

We understand that some people in our community experience barriers to community and civic participation. Council’s Inclusive Melbourne Strategy 2022-23 aims to listen to more diverse voices and ensure more people are included in the local economy and have access to neighbourhood assets.

To help decision making become more inclusive and locally responsive, City of Melbourne holds Future Melbourne Committee Council meetings in neighbourhood venues. On 14 June 2022, the North Melbourne Meat Market hosted a meeting that featured local matters and public submissions.

Our volunteering program support residents to give back to the community and meet new people. You can also get in touch with local organisations like North Melbourne Rotary, Hotham Mission, and North Melbourne Language and Learning to chat about how you can contribute your skills, passion and time.

We’re encouraging more grass-roots community leadership with the introduction of Connected Neighbourhoods Small Grants. Individuals and non-incorporated groups can now apply for up to $2000 throughout the year to support neighbourhood-strengthening initiatives.


  • Climate and biodiversity emergency

    We will prioritise our environment and take urgent action to reduce emissions and waste in order to protect public health, strengthen the economy and create a city that mitigates and adapts to climate change. The City of Melbourne declared a climate and biodiversity emergency in 2019.

Share skills, resources and implement sustainable initiatives, such as community gardens and e-vehicle charging stations.

What you told us

You said residents, especially those living in apartment buildings need collective solutions to help live more sustainably. You're interested in community gardens, shared composting sites, e-waste collection points, e-vehicle charging stations and neighbourhood solar batteries.

You also want the community to be empowered to share useful skills and resources, through toy/tool/kitchen libraries, maker spaces, men’s sheds, skills and goods exchanges or food cooperatives.

“I would make renewable energy technologies a priority, installing community batteries, electric vehicle charging stations and make solar mandatory. Ideally, North Melbourne might even eventually become its own micro grid.”

“A welcoming neighbourhood house which can be booked for little money especially for low-income earners for kids’ parties and family events. Would have toys, kitchen etc. access recycling, has a community food pantry and book library and recycling facilities…for example Finbar in Richmond.“

“Most of us can only afford living in apartments or small townhouses... I wish there was a way we can have access to community solar panels or battery. I also wish we could have communal glass recycle bins and compost bins.”

What we’re doing

Our bold climate action agenda wants us to be 100% powered by renewable energy by 2030. Our Power Melbourne shared solar battery scheme allows residents, including apartment dwellers to connect with a neighbourhood energy network.

We have recommended future off-street Electric Vehicle charging stations in the precincts of Arden and Macaulay through proposed amendments to the Melbourne Planning Scheme.

We’re keen to promote opportunities for North Melburnians to share skills and resources locally. Community Gardens are a fantastic way to grow fresh produce as well as connect with your neighbours.

Check out the Patch Community Garden located at the back of the Meat Market, and the Cultivating Community Garden on Buncle Street Reserve.

Neighbours in Erskine Street have followed our Street Garden Guidelines to create colourful raised veggie and flower boxes and communal composting on the wide median strip.

Other wonderful examples of our neighbourhood share economy in action, include the Toy Library on Melrose Street and public food pantry, out the front of Our Community House.

What we’re doing next

We will develop a set of Circular Economy Guidelines that can support Council, businesses and our community to minimise ‘environmental footprint’, by reducing consumption and waste, as well as reusing, recycling and repairing products within local systems.


[February 2023] Throughout 2021 we completed three phases of community consultation to guide enhancements for Hawke Street. Phase three of the community consultation was on the proposed design plans and to better understand concerns form the community. Throughout 2022, the project team used this feedback to revise and improve the design plans. Construction on the new Hawke Street Linear Park is anticipated to commence early 2024 and expected to take around 12 months to complete. To stay up to date with the project, follow the project's Participate Melbourne page.

[February 2023] We're working to make it easier to access affordable renewable energy, Our Power Melbourne project will install a network of neighbourhood batteries around the city to help renters, people living in apartments, and those running small businesses access more affordable renewable electricity. Late last year we consulted with community on ideas for where neighbourhood batteries should be installed and how we design retail plans with an energy retail partner. Keep an eye on the Power Melbourne page for opportunities to get involved in the next stage of engagement activities, opening soon.

Develop strong locally led networks that coordinate emergency preparedness activities.

What you told us

You said the spirit of care and neighbourly cooperation demonstrated during the COVID-19 hard-lockdown highlighted what can be achieved when communities come together. You want us to build on this and help the community to be better informed and prepared to respond collectively to emergencies; knowing where to go and how to help each other in times of crisis.

“Coming from rural Victoria, community venues are spaces that are easily identified when people need to come together whether it is an emergency, a tragic event or a place of celebration. It’s hard to know where that would be in North Melbourne.”

“Having plenty of pre-identified safe houses in the neighbourhood that citizens can take shelter in case of emergency.”

“Launch a community action program, where everyone has a role and community are empowered to organise and support ourselves, and especially people who need help.”

What we’re doing

The Arts House’s Refuge project invites artists and emergency service personnel to explore creative responses to climate emergencies; including heatwave, pandemic and mass displacement. In 2022-23, we're collaborating with community on the development of a North Melbourne Flood Response Plan, which can become a model for other neighbourhoods across the municipality.

Our Council Plan invests in Community Disaster Resilience with programs to help you be better prepared. We’re keen to understand what types of events, activities and support would be valuable to you and your local community as we tackle climate change and disasters together.


[February 2023] We’ve become one of six cities around the world to appoint dedicated Chief Heat Officers to raise awareness about extreme heat risk, provide local leadership and collaborate to deliver solutions. We’re currently delivering Heat Health Preparedness seminars with a range of community groups across February and March. We're also working on developing a plan to make the city safer from the impacts of heat and will be engaging with people who may be vulnerable to the experiences of heatwaves across each neighbourhood.

  • Economy of the future

    We will focus on driving economic recovery and creating the conditions for a strong, adaptive, sustainable and thriving future city economy supported by a diverse mix of industries and jobs that provide dignity and opportunity.

Support pathways for residents who experience barriers to employment.

What you told us

You told us that it’s fundamental to your sense of connection and wellbeing, and to your ability to remain in the area to have greater access to local jobs, especially for those who experience barriers to employment.

“Jobs are fundamental for people to feel good and to afford to live here. Localised jobs and community life intersect.”

“… more focus on helping African youth get jobs and services.”

“Assistance for local people who need work to become ingrained in the suburb. Assistance for cafe training, market work etcetera.“

What we’re doing

We understand that some of you experience barriers to economic participation. Council’s Inclusive Melbourne Strategy 2022-23 aims to have a more diverse representation in the local workforce.

This strategy requires us to have recruitment targets for key providers. We piloted this recently with a municipality-wide Recreation Facilities management agreement with the YMCA.

Game Changers is an employment readiness program facilitated by North Melbourne Football Club’s community arm, The Huddle. It offers practical support to young people aged 15 –25 years old.

Other community-led initiatives include, Ubuntu Project’s African Australian Career Expo at Meat Market in March 2022. Venue hire for this event was subsidised by City of Melbourne.


Foster an exciting retail, hospitality and service precinct, with more to enjoy locally after dark.

What you told us

You said that the range of eateries, retail and services available in our local activity centres aren’t keeping pace with changing trends, and the precincts are looking a bit tired. You suggested that coordinated planning of these areas could build on the unique North Melbourne character.

This could include extending the iconic ‘heritage look’ around Errol Street, trialling car-free times, as well as having more to do and enjoy after dark, such as a cinema.

“I would love to see the stretch of Errol Street from Victoria to Queensberry closed to traffic [other than trams]. This would allow restaurants and cafes to provide pleasant outdoor dining. Parking should be moved away from the main street.”

“Outdoor sports events from the council would be amazing. Night market and cinema nights in summer would be amazing.”

“Make it beautiful and interesting and ever changing. Make it a reason to come to Errol Street. Have a community day, roving artists, open the businesses, bring life back into the old girl. COVID-19 has been terribly unkind to her.”

What we’re doing

Through our Business Precinct Program 2021-25, we encourage local businesses to join the North and West Melbourne Precinct Association to benefit from local activation support and marketing campaigns.

We provide a range of support for businesses including: grants, mentoring, workshops, extended outdoor dining initiatives, regular newsletters, research and data sharing.

We continue to strengthen North Melbourne's economic recovery through precinct and shopfront activation, and delivery of an enhanced business concierge service.

We recently worked with the local business precinct association to trial pop-up tree planter boxes and bench seating in Errol Street and part of Queensberry Street. We are currently looking at community feedback to see if there is support for more permanent street improvements for the area.

Nobody likes to see vacant shopfronts. Our Creative Spaces program is supporting a series of free pop-up social enterprise tenancies at the council-owned, shop 54 Errol Street.


[February 2023] We’ve launched the Melbourne Economy Snapshot, a free seasonal activity guide designed to help businesses make data-led decisions by understanding Melbourne’s new rhythm.

[February 2023] The first edition shows a sky-high December, with a record $1.1b spent across the city. Friday and Saturday remain the busiest days in Melbourne, while our night-time economy continues to flourish. Delve into the nitty gritty and explore weekday, weekend and night-time activity.

[February 2023] Dusk 2 Dawn applications were open throughout November and December. Applications are currently being reviewed, with successful activations commencing in May.

[February 2023] The City of Melbourne’s social enterprise grants program supports social enterprise businesses to thrive in Melbourne. The program supports startups and existing enterprises which are expanding or developing new products or services with a distinctly social purpose. Applications are currently open and close at 2pm Friday 10 March 2023.

[February 2023] Between October 2022 and January 2023 our Business Concierge service have had 5000 interactions with businesses across the municipality. The range of enquiries have been simple support requests over the phone and email, face to face interactions and supporting new businesses in their start up.

[December 2022] The Christmas Collective program is an initiative as part of the Christmas Festival. One of the objectives is to increase visitation and spend supporting the economy. A total of $74,726.00 in funding was allocated to 15 businesses/groups to deliver an event or activity.

[December 2022] To support local businesses, we lifted the holiday spirit with our Christmas Decoration program, including the Melbourne CBD, East Melbourne, Carlton, Docklands, Southbank, North Melbourne and Kensington.

[December 2022] The North and West Melbourne Precinct Association hosted the Dance This Way on-street activation across multiple weekends in November. There was music, totem poles, decals, in-store activities, prizes, and gift vouchers. Christmas activations were run by the North and West Melbourne Precinct Association for two weeks including buskers, roving Christmas characters, Santa, choir, and Christmas raffle.

  • Melbourne’s unique identity and place

    We will celebrate and protect the places, people and cultures that make Melbourne a unique, vibrant and creative city with world-leading liveability.

Increase the amount of parkland and activate median strips, residential streets and laneways.

What you told us

You really value parks and smaller green pockets for their shade, beauty, ecology, and social function. You’d like to see continued Council investment in greening to ensure that as our population grows and the climate changes, our neighbourhood remains liveable.

You’d also love to see North Melbourne’s laneways, residential streets and median strips brought to life with creative installations, park furniture, street gardens and the ability to host street parties.

“Diversify how we attract people into the neighbourhood. Our Laneways are quite wonderful! I'd like to revitalise and use them more. This could be done by reorganising garbage collection, so these spaces are not rubbish storage spots; encouraging good graffiti and street art (not tagging); changing local laws to make it easier for traders and property owners to do more activities in them; having arts and light installations, for example, bring elements of White Night here.”

“I see people picnicking on median strips, so I would want to create a family-oriented green space with places for people to hang out.”

“I also think all our trees and plants should be natives to restore biodiversity to our median strips and parks - like near the Castle Hotel, those are awesome. Even more opportunities to grow food, like a community garden next to the Castle Hotel on that huge vacant block would be fantastic.”

What we’re doing

We have been strategically greening streets and increasing the amount of open space parklands throughout North Melbourne.

In 2019, we celebrated the Gardiner Reserve Park Expansion, which saw the Reserve’s footprint grow by 47% and 87 new trees planted. Early 2022, saw major works to enhance the small residential streets of Provost, Little Provost and Little Baillie. Arden Street’s median strip has recently received a biodiverse facelift, with plantings that support healthier habitats for wildlife, pets and people.

This work has been guided by our municipal Urban Forest Strategy and the North and West Melbourne Urban Forest Precinct Plan that sits beneath it. Our Nature in the City Strategy outlines how we will protect and enhance ecosystem health and biodiversity. Local investment by the Urban Forest Fund supports gardens, tree planting, biodiversity projects, green roofs and vertical greening, including projects within Haines Street and Curzon Street.

The Moonee Ponds Creek Strategic Opportunities Plan looks to revitalise the creek with a chain of park and wetlands. While the City does not control the creek corridor, we are advocating for improvements to the North Melbourne section of the creek, which runs along the eastern bank from Racecource Road to Dynon Road. These include pedestrian bridges, an arts trail that celebrate Aboriginal and other local heritage, separated walking and cycling tracks, native revegetation, as well as water storage and flood management solutions.


[February 2023] Through our Urban Forest Fund, we’re supporting five new greening projects that will beautify and cool our neighbourhoods, creating 1000 square metres of new green cover. Tram stops will be transformed into lush eco-installations and community gardens will pop up in unlikely places through $500,000 in matched-funding to create a greener, more sustainable city.

[February 2023] A historic fire station in North Melbourne and now residential apartment building, will become an inviting communal garden for residents to enjoy.

[February 2023] We planted 13 new medium sized street trees on Little Baillie Street. Three car spaces were repurposed for the introduction of trees and native understorey plants, with 20 on street car spaces retained.

[February 2023] We planted 41 new street trees in Provost and Little Provost Street and introduced speed bumps at each end of Provost Street as a part of the plans to reduce the number and speed of 'through-way' vehicles.

[February 2023] We met with the Provost Street residents in February 2023 to discuss how City of Melbourne can support community led greening and to inform the Provost Street design intention.

Celebrate the contribution of women who have shaped North Melbourne through history.

What you told us

You told us you love learning about the people and stories threaded through the fabric and history of our neighbourhood.

You’ve noticed that very few of the local monuments, reserves and streets highlight the role of women in shaping North Melbourne, and you hope we can work towards a better gender-balance of place-naming, educational displays, and public art.

“These are crucial to root North and West Melbourne in time and in history, and to ensure that it develops with that history in mind. I also believe that engaging history and creating significance in that way can attract people and tourists to want to experience and learn more about Melbourne.”

“When you look at the 1891 ‘Monster Petition’ for women’s suffrage, which is sitting in the Public Records Office in Shiel St, a huge proportion of those signatories were women living in North Melbourne. Most of them were ordinary working-class women, who were organising and agitating and influenced the course of Victorian democracy.”

“All of the streets, the historical buildings, and reserves in North Melbourne have been named after men. When are we going to acknowledge the role of the many amazing and fascinating women?!”

What we’re doing

Our 2021-23 Women's Safety and Empowerment Action Plan seeks to promote women and gender diverse people in public places and spaces.

We will commemorate and acknowledge influential women’s achievements through street naming, monuments, plaques, arts, awards, and events. There will be a particular focus on Aboriginal women and immigrant and refugee women. See: Put Her Name On it Campaign, Zelda D’Aprano monument.

In 2009, two laneways off Buncle Street were formally named after suffragette and sexual health activist Brettena Smyth and prominent member of the Australian Womens Union, Ruth Crow. The Lady Huntingfield Early Learning and Family Services Centre on Haines Street, has proudly borne the name of its social advocate namesake since the 1940s.

Arts House commissioned photographer Jody Haines in 2019 for I Am Woman, a large format photographic exhibition of female portraits focused on local identities, gazing from windows along Queensbury and Errol Streets. Valuing story-exchange and bringing local histories to life, local resident, Lorna Hannan OA has been engaged to host Ruth Crow Walks and Ruth Crow Corner as part of a Refuge project.


Ensure new buildings add positive value to the neighbourhood through appropriate design and community amenity.

What you told us

You said you are not opposed to medium-density residential buildings, if they’re designed well and in appropriate locations. However, you believe dense high-rise buildings do not fit the character of North Melbourne and that they negatively impact residents’ liveability.

You’ve suggested that any new housing development must provide facilities for the community, such as childcare centres.

“There is definitely scope for more housing and apartments but plans so far for the Arden precinct out of scale for the area. The character of the area should be maintained...Additional housing should be accompanied by additional facilities, such as childcare, schools - not just relying on "market led" enterprise, but publicly funded facilities - including high schools.”

“Don't go super high-rise. We need smart denser housing clustered around the train stations, that's well designed [not all glass for example, like the development near Vic Market]. Not thoughtless 'easy' architecture.”

“If it is necessary to have new buildings at least make them architecturally interesting with courtyards for green spaces and outdoor leisure and eating areas within these new buildings.”

What we’re doing

We’ve launched a Development Activity Model to better inform you of future buildings and construction in your area. Council is also currently pursuing Amendment C376 to the Melbourne Planning Scheme, which proposes to regulate Sustainable Building Design requirements across the municipality.

We are working alongside the Victorian Government, community and industry stakeholders, to ensure new buildings; accommodate a genuine mix of homes and workplaces, meet high standards of design and sustainability, and will realise our vision for the renewal precincts of Arden and Macaulay.

We recognise the importance of supporting the liveability of North Melbourne as it develops over the next twenty to thirty years. The proposed Amendments C407 and C417 to the Melbourne Planning Scheme would ensure new building projects also co-fund new public green spaces, community facilities, and a new primary school.

We continue to rigorously advocate to the Victorian Government for building density in Arden that strikes the right balance between integrating with the surrounding neighbourhoods and providing a hub of high-quality jobs and transport around the new metro station.

We’ve listened closely to locals through the planning for Macaulay, ensuring new building applications would need to demonstrate they are considering the unique character of the area, will maintain adequate sunlight to streets and parks, and will contribute to a neighbourhood that feels good to be in.


[February 2023] The Neighbourhood Portals have been updated with links to planning register entries relevant to each neighbourhood, making it easier for community members to find local planning applications. Weekly Planning Applications and Decisions Lists are now sorted by neighbourhood for ease of reference. Sign up to receive these weekly emails.

  • Safety and wellbeing

    We will plan and design for the safety and wellbeing of those who live, visit, work and do business in Melbourne, regardless of their background.

Explore safe and inviting places for youth, as well as affordable childcare options.

What you told us

You told us that there’s a lack of good and affordable childcare particularly for families living in public housing, making it harder for some parents to participate in activities such as education classes and important appointments.

We've heard that local families want fun stuff to do with their kids, and young people are looking for safe and inviting places to hang-out after school and at weekends.

“Open high quality affordable childcare.”

“I have the means to go and sit in cafes. But, especially with so many kids in North Melbourne moving into their teenage years, I think having solid, safe, accessible [that is free] spaces for them to hang out will be important.”

“More family oriented. Venues where you can go with your kids to learn something and be entertained. Its currently not that fun for kids.”

What we’re doing

We deliver childcare and integrated kindergarten services at the Lady Huntingfield Early Learning and Family Services Centre as well as the North Melbourne Childrens’ Centre. Our dedicated playgroup space at North Melbourne Community Centre encourages connection, play and friendship between infants, toddlers and parents.

North Melbourne Library has an accessible child-friendly space hosting free Monday and Wednesday ‘songbirds’ sessions and Thursday ‘stompers’ story times.

School aged children 5 –15 years old can head over to the nearby Kensington Adventure Playground, where funded partners, The Venny host an afternoon drop-in Tuesday – Saturday.

The Drum provides specialised support to young people aged between 12 – 25 years, by providing group programs and one-on-one support at the North Melbourne Community Centre.


[February 2023] Our Mel-van is dedicated to bringing free wi-fi, books, games, craft activities, events and educational resources to people across the City of Melbourne who may find it difficult to access our libraries. We regularly visit North Melbourne Language and Learning Centre for Neighbourhood Networking.

Cleaner streets, better lighting and more police presence.

What you told us

You’ve shared that you don’t always feel safe in public spaces of North Melbourne. You believe that increased public lighting, more frequent bin collection, better managed graffiti, as well as working with police and support services could help discourage anti-social behaviour.

“At night, street lighting is important. Seeing others walking dogs makes me feel comfortable when I'm moving around the neighbourhood.”

“Antisocial behaviour makes the neighbourhood feel less safe. When there's graffiti around it projects a lack of pride and respect. And seeing rough sleeping people in public areas makes me uncomfortable.”

Some kind of welfare centre, away from public thoroughfares, that ensures homeless, and drug affected people have access to resources to help with reliance upon drugs, alcohol and begging in order to survive. Welfare professionals and community members need to come together to discuss this.”

What we’re doing

We’ve called together a diverse group of community members to help identify North Melbourne road and street improvements to create a more pedestrian-friendly neighbourhood.

Our Clean City team conduct street sweeping, pressure hosing, and graffiti removal from public areas, and can assist with graffiti on private business properties upon request. Our Rapid Response Clean team recently conducted a two week proactive litter and tagging removal blitz in North Melbourne. You can report a location for street cleaning, repair or maintenance online anytime, or call us on 9658 9658.

We recently upgraded Citipower’s street lighting to LED globes and regularly investigate public recommendations to improve lighting in our neighbourhoods.

We work with Victoria Police and other community support agencies to enhance public safety. We are represented on the Police Community Consultative Committee, which meets monthly at the North Melbourne Police station, and connect through the newly launched Neighbourhood Policing model. We also maintain collaborative relationships with North Melbourne crisis accommodation providers, Salvation Army and Vincent Care.

What we’re doing next

City of Melbourne will review its street bin services and design.


[December 2022] As part of Victoria Police's Neighbourhood Policing initiative, a Local Safety Committee meeting was held for Melbourne West and North on 9 December 2022, and included representatives from Carlton, Parkville, Docklands, Kensington, North Melbourne, West Melbourne and the western part of the Melbourne CBD.

Support local lifestyle options for older residents.

What you told us

You said that a liveable neighbourhood must consider the needs and support relevant to people as they grow older.

You believe this includes providing programs, facilities and services that support older peoples' social, recreational and wellbeing interests close to home. You also hope to see aged care accommodation options open up within North Melbourne.

"I've lived here all my life, but as I get older, I worry about how long I'll be able to stay. What happens when I need another level of care?"

"Being active and connected is so important, and the PRIME community has become absolutely essential to my wellbeing!"

"There should be more attention and investment in facilities that meet the needs of older residents."

What we’re doing

The Commonwealth Government subsidises aged care services and aged care homes through My Aged Care with nearby aged care homes located in Carlton, Kensington, Parkville and Flemington

We provide a broad range of programs and resources to assist older people.

Our Melbourne: A Great Place to Age Strategic Plan 2020-24 guides our work over four years to aim to be one of the great cities in the world in which to grow older by challenging negative stereotypes towards ageing.

The Jean McKendry Neighbourhood Centre is prioritised for use by older people and carers. It is a safe, accessible and welcoming environment where older people and carers can participate in a diverse range of social, cultural, educational, recreational and community activities. It has recently improved its audio equipment enabling people with hearing difficulties to participate in activities.

The North Melbourne Recreation Centre provides PRIME group fitness classes specifically designed for older people. All classes are open to members.


[February 2023] Our Connect Cafes are hosted at the Jean McKendry Neighbourhood Centre and provide one to one tech help with a trained and skilled Lively Tech Helper. Learn more about how to use your mobile, laptop or tablet to connect better with family and friends and research or discover new interests.

[February 2023] Book-A-Librarian has kicked off again for 2023 where people can book one on one time to get some digital literacy support with online platforms and use of digital devices.

Encourage community led initiatives that build local links, social connection and multicultural pride.

What you told us

You told us that you love the community relationships, the link to the North Melbourne Football Club and neighbourhood pride. You want to keep feeling happy and socially connected by initiating more local activities such as meet-ups, cultural events, history tours, and block parties.

“We are all fond and proud of this wonderful area where I made lots of friends and connections with the multicultural community.”

“It was the community spirit [that first attracted me to the area] but for me, that is no longer there.”

“…neighbourhood or street BBQ/parties where everybody can come and meet.”

“North Melbourne footy club encompasses the local Shinboner spirit of the camaraderie of sticking together no matter what.”

What we’re doing

We have introduced a Neighbourhood Partner model to encourage local collaborations that foster neighbourly relationships, local pride and place-based insight.

We’re encouraging more neighbourhood level initiatives with the introduction of Connected Neighbourhoods Small Grants. Individuals and non-incorporated groups can now apply for up to $2000 throughout the year to support grass-roots community-building.

We also fund community events through our Events Partnership Program and Connected Communities grants.


[February 2023] We have supported various community projects with Connected Neighbourhood Small Grants including the following in North Melbourne:

Healing Mind through Music aims to collaborate with Paving The Way Forward, Co Health, Chinese Elderly Dancing Group and Vietnamese Elderly Association in North Melbourne to bring elderly people of all backgrounds together, to help people to improve mental health by healing the mind, body, and soul.

River Nile Learning Centre (RNLC) students are all newly arrived refugee and asylum seeker women who struggle to survive on limited or no welfare payments. The grant will be used to purchase Myki’s for participants in English language classes at our learning centre in North Melbourne.

Negotiate public areas where both animals and humans can exercise and socialise safely.

What you told us

You believe pets are important members of the community and that dogs need more dedicated green spaces to run around off-leash. You’d like to see these spaces fenced and well maintained, for the safety of dogs as well as other park users.

You’d also like to see pet ownership education offered year-round, and more indoor venues to welcome your furry friends.

“Provide education sessions on responsible pet ownership throughout the year to help inform residents on how they can better care for their pets for better community and animal welfare outcomes.”

“It would be great to have double gates at Clayton Reserve as most other dog off-leash enclosed areas have... It is a very high traffic area so there should be more protection for dogs. It would also be good if there were more council patrols at this park as some people allow their dogs to get quite aggressive at this park (which isn't very big).”

“Fence off Eades Place Park, so greyhound owners can let their dogs off for a run. There is a large population of greyhounds in the community.”

What we’re doing

We manage Clayton Reserve, a large fenced-off dog park on Macaulay Road, as well as North Melbourne Recreation Reserve off-leash area, which surrounds Arden Oval. The large off-leash area in Royal Park south is another local spot popular with dog walkers.

As part of our Domestic Animal Management Plan 2022–25 we are reviewing available off-leash areas across the municipality, making sure dogs and their owners are considered in planning for future public open space.

Our Animal Management Officers, Park Rangers and Local Laws Officers patrol public areas and parks to ensure compliance with laws such as leashing, picking up after dogs and animal registration. These teams work closely with North Melbourne’s Lost Dogs Home and Lort Smith Animal Hospital.

What we’re doing next

We continue to update our Walking your dog map as more become available in the municipality.


[February 2023] We are currently working on developing 'dogs in the park' events in neighbourhoods. These events, in partnership with behaviour trainers from the Lost Dogs' Home aim to raise awareness and provide education of dog behaviour, enrichment and responsible dog ownership to improve dog and human experiences in public places.