Two new “grand” suburbs planned for Melbourne’s west

urban design new developmentsLand surrounding an old goldfields route near Rockbank will soon be transformed to make way for two new “grand” suburbs expected to house more than 55,000 people.

The state government last week released Precinct Structure Plans for the two suburbs, which will be between Caroline Springs and the emerging suburb of Rockbank North.

The new suburbs are expected to cater for Melbourne’s booming population and the demand for affordable housing in the western suburbs.

Metropolitan Planning Authority (MPA) chief executive Peter Seamer said the new suburbs would be enhanced and characterised by large open spaces.

“Our growth areas will be home to a significant amount of Victoria’s future population and we need to plan for these communities to have access to jobs, services and great open space,” Mr Seamer said.

“The MPA is committed to providing affordable housing choice for all Victorians in urban renewal areas and the established and new suburbs of Melbourne.”

The area, spanning almost 2000 hectares, could, according to the MPA, provide up to 14,000 post-construction jobs, have 10 schools and a town centre accessible by the former Beattys Road goldfields route and close to the Caroline Spring train station.

Hume Drive will be extended to connect with Tarletons Road in the west and to connect the new suburbs to Taylors Hill West.

According to the MPA, the state government is expected to reap more than $180 million in developer levies, while Melton council is expected to receive more than $385 million.

Natural landscape features, including local plants and native grasslands, will be maintained.

Melton council city design, strategy and environment manager Laura-Jo Mellan said that while the new suburbs would help create jobs, state and federal governments needed to invest in infrastructure needs.

“The challenge is to ensure that required infrastructure – such as the future Hopkins Road upgrade, upgrades of Melton Highway and the Western Freeway, and the delivery of the planned Kororoit Regional Park, along with investment in schools and community facilities – is delivered in a timely way,” Ms Mellan said. For more information about the new suburbs, visit www.mpa.vic.gov.au

The 9th International Urban Design Conference; Smart Cities for 21st Century Australia – How urban design innovation can change our cities  will be held at Hyatt Canberra from 7th-8th November 2016 with optional tours available on Wednesday 9th November.

Registrations are now open. CLICK HERE to register for the Conference. Early bird closes 26th September 2016 so be quick to receive a discounted rate.

This years’ theme, will focus on an understanding of what makes a city ‘smart’ from a urban design perspective and how the built environment develops during the city planning process.

Authors or organisations interested in presenting at the 9th International Urban Design Conference are invited to submit an abstract. To submit an abstract CLICK HERE. Abstracts close 25th July 2016.

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