With our population set to significantly increase over the coming decade it is important to ensure that our streetscapes are prepared for future growth and are safe enjoyable places for people.
The City of Melbourne has introduced the Streetscape Framework (PDF, 1.6MB)(External link) which aims to work with businesses and the community to effectively respond to the changing needs of our streets.
A number of streetscape improvement projects are planned for each upcoming financial year. You can view this year's projects in the Current Projects section of this site.
1. Royal Lane, between Little Collins and Bourke Streets
2. Flinders Street, between Swanston and Exhibition Streets
3. Stewart Street, between Franklin and A’Beckett Streets
4. Lonsdale Street, between Swanston Street and Caledonian Lane
5. William Street, between Little Collins and Collins Streets
6. Collins Street, between Spencer and King Streets
Lighting works and road resurfacing brought a little love to this access lane.
Brights Place, Healeys Lane and Crombie Lane
This important pedestrian connection between Flagstaff Station and Bourke Street was strengthened as part of the wider Connecting Laneways project.
Literature Lane and Little Latrobe Street
An innovative ‘leveling’ treatment retained the heritage character of this lane whilst improving the pedestrian environment to complement future events, tours and activities associated with Melbourne’s role as a City of Literature.
Elizabeth Street, between Little Bourke and Lonsdale Streets
Upgrade asphalt footpath to bluestone paving.
Spencer Street, between Flinders Lane and Collins Street
Works to improve station access and upgrade the pedestrian environment through bluestone footpaths, stainless steel seat, bins and bike racks and improved access for people with a disability.
Elizabeth Street, between Little Latrobe and Latrobe Streets
Upgrade asphalt footpath to bluestone paving.
Lonsdale Street, between Russell and Swanston Streets
Major road works saw the replacement of the central median, access to an electricity supply for local events and resurfacing of the road, all in time for the Lonsdale Street Festival (part of the popular Antipodean Festival).
Little Collins Street
The footpath between King and Spencer streets was widened to more safely accommodate the many commuters using Southern Cross station, particularly at peak times. New bluestone paving, seats, bike racks and additional trees - watered using a Water Sensitive Urban Design (WSUD) treatment - made the street more attractive for residents, businesses and visitors.
Home to residents, businesses and artisans, this laneway was transformed through a local traffic treatment which prioritises pedestrians over vehicles and opens up opportunities for outdoor dining and laneway activation. A rain garden and native Cabbage Palms – the first of their kind to be planted in the central city – complete the transformation.
Derby Street, Kensington
Intersection works to improve road safety at the corner of Derby and Ormond streets was the first improvement as part of a broader streetscape masterplan for the local area.
Bromby Street, South Yarra
Repairing root damage to the footpath and underground drain provided the opportunity to maximise green space and create better growing conditions for the street’s magnificent Plane trees to ensure they remain in good health into the future. When we discovered a tight tangle of tree roots just below the road surface, we used an innovative and non-destructive hydro blasting technique instead of a conventional approach which could have damaged the roots and perhaps proved fatal to the mature trees.
Streetscape improvements in this busy commercial hub saw the footpath between William and Queen streets upgraded to bluestone while access for people with a disability was improved and the latest Water Sensitive Urban Design (WSUD) technology was used to help existing and new trees to flourish.
Works between Lonsdale and Little Lonsdale streets saw asphalt footpaths replaced with bluestone paving, seats, bins and bike racks upgraded to stainless steel and access for people with a disability improved through ramps and crossings which meet the requirements of the Disability Discrimination Act.
In the busy hub of Collins Street, between Elizabeth and Queen streets, the footpath was de-cluttered by relocating or replacing existing benches, bins and bicycle parking, and the pavement was upgraded to improve the pedestrian environment and provide access ramps for people with disabilities.
Harris Street, North Melbourne
The entire length of Harris Street, between Curzon and Errol streets North Melbourne, received an upgrade, including renewal of the roadway, footpath and drainage, and landscaping of the area.
The streetscape improvements in this unique central city laneway widened the bluestone footpath to provide a pleasant area for people to walk and to sit and enjoy the outdoor café.
Elizabeth Street, between La Trobe and Little Lonsdale streets, received new bluestone footpaths and street furniture.
The busy retail hub of Flinders Lane was enlivened by expanding the footpaths and replacing the old street furniture and lighting. New trees were also planted to add to the lane’s character.
Through the Streetscapes Framework, the City of Melbourne made improvements in Elizabeth Street to allow better day and night time lighting. Skylights and lights were installed in the verandas to brighten up the area.
- Why is the City of Melbourne investing in a Streetscape Improvements program?
The city’s population and visitation are increasing, and it is important to ensure that the safety, character and accessibility of our streets and laneways are prepared for future growth. The City of Melbourne’s Streetscape Framework is a tool to determine the priority and best design of streets for improvements.
- How often does the City of Melbourne upgrade and improve its streets?
Major refurbishments of the streetscapes occur once every 20 years or so. We also undertake repair and maintenance works as required.
- Will I have the opportunity to comment on the concept plans?
Yes. The concept plans are provided online and show the locations of the proposed streetscapes works. We encourage feedback from the community using the online feedback form at melbourne.vic.gov.au/participate. If you would prefer us to send hard copy versions of concept plans or feedback forms, please contact us by email firstname.lastname@example.org(External link) or phone 9658 9658.
- What if I have some ideas about improvements to other streets or laneways?
As part of the Streetscape Framework (PDF, 1.6MB)(External link), residents and businesses are encouraged to share their ideas about future street or laneway improvements. You can email your idea and outline why you think a particular streetscape needs a facelift to email@example.com
Any proposed projects are assessed against the Streetscape Framework’s selection criteria before being considered for Council’s annual works program. Please refer to the Streetscape Framework for further information about this process.
- What is Water Sensitive Urban Design (WSUD)?
Water Sensitive Urban Design (WSUD) embraces a range of measures that are designed to avoid, or at least minimise, the environmental impacts of urbanisation in terms of the demand for water and the potential pollution threat to natural water bodies.
The City of Melbourne has adopted the WSUD Guidelines(External link) which inform Council staff, developers and residents on how to apply WSUD principles to urban developments or local water reuse and treatment projects.
Many streetscape improvement projects provide an opportunity to incorporate WSUD principles into the way we design and construct our streets.
- What is canopy cover?
The City of Melbourne’s Urban Forest Strategy (External link)aims to:
- adapt our city to climate change,
- mitigate the urban heat island effect by bringing our inner-city temperatures down,
- create healthier ecosystem,s
- become a water-sensitive city, and
- engage and involving the community.
We will achieve this by:
- Increasing canopy cover from 22 per cent to 40 per cent by 2040
- Increasing forest diversity with no more than five per cent of one tree species, no more than ten per cent of one genus and no more than 20 per cent of any one family
- Improving vegetation health
- Improving soil moisture
- Improving biodiversity
- Informing and consulting with the community.
Many streetscape improvement projects provide an opportunity to increase canopy cover (by planting new trees) while also improving vegetation health and soil moisture.
- How will my property be affected during construction?
Construction works often cause noise and dust in the surrounding area. Often there will also be temporary changes to parking arrangements.
All efforts will be made to keep any inconvenience to a minimum. We appreciate your patience.
You will be informed by letter when construction is due to start and our contractors will be available to discuss any concerns by phone or to meet you on site.
- What can I do to avoid problems during construction?
We urge you to check the signs before you park to ensure you are parking legally. Where possible, we ask that you keep your vehicles away from this site during the works. We thank you for your cooperation.
Usually, there will be no change to your garbage or recycling collections during construction works, so you can continue to place your bins for collection as usual.