The City of Greater Geelong

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Background:

First settled in 1803, as the second largest city in Victoria, Geelong is the main regional hub and port for western Victoria where offers combination of employment and investment opportunities, health and education facilities, fabulous shopping malls and the many cultural assets including the Geelong Performing Arts Centre, gallery, museums and the botanic gardens. These allow residents enjoy the benefit of diverse and multicultural communities in the growth of the city. As result, Geelong has been growing 1-1.5 percent over the last 7 years.

However, the occupancy rate is still low:

Housing:

  • In 2006, population in central Geelong is 4355 persons. By 2011 it is 4700 (Jones Lang LaSalle).
  • Residents ages of 20‐24, 25‐34 and 55 and over is greater in Central Geelong than others municipality as Central Geelong is popular with students and young professionals and retirees.
  • 40.4% of the dwelling types is high and medium density dwellings in Central Geelong compared to 13.9% in Greater Geelong, although separate houses remain at 57.8% of the housing stock (Jones Lang LaSalle).
  • Source: ABS 2006 Census Population and Housing

Office

  • In 2012 there was 236,000m2 of office space in Central Geelong, of which only 30% is reasonable quality, modern space. The majority of Central Geelong’s office stock is of poor quality, is unsuitable for many potential tenants.

Retail

  • Market Square and Westfield Geelong Shopping Centre provide a diverse and comprehensive range of retail form.
  • Traditional strip retailing has struggled in recent years due in part to the competition from the extended Westfield and limited investment in individual assets.
  • The growth in online retailing increase vacancy rates in shopping strips such as Bridge Road in Richmond and Toorak Road in South Yarra (Knight Frank Research 2013).
  • The existing floor space is spread north away along Ryrie Street and Moorabool Street and along Malop Street and further north from proximity to Westfield and is therefore unlikely to be economically viable as retail floor space at any one time in the future.

Introduction

75km to the south-west of Melbourne, central Geelong is on a north facing slope between Corio Bay and the Barwon River. The place appears with spectacular landscape: the country, coast, as the best destination to live through prosperous and cohesive communities in an exceptional environment. Strongly believe in the strength of city and its soul is in people, a lot of efforts and emphasis has been placed on creating vibrant social cores for local communities and city central where diverse groups of people can interact.

Geelong Vision 2:

With Vision 2, series of workshops have defined the challenges in attempting to direct the transitioning of city of Geelong from an industrial past to an urban hub’ (Vision 2 Project Report, 2013) by 6 different integrated projects demonstrate on the regeneration of the CBD area. In this strategy, the Green Spine places the roll of transforming the Malop street into the main street that connects the train station to Eastern Park. It is designed to connect the hub of the City Arrival to the newly invigorated city laneways and urban heart in the attempt to encourages pedestrian traffic to walk toward the city centre, reinvigorating the shopping area and creating a sense of atmosphere to the visitors to and inhabitants of the city.

The City of Greater Geelong

The City of Greater Geelong has demonstrated strong commitment to revitalizing Central Geelong. Partnerships with State Government and other players have been instrumental in stimulating investment in the now iconic waterfront, major street works, major events and pursuing key foundational capital projects such as the Library and Heritage Centre, Yarra Street Pier and Convention Centre.

CULTURAL HERITAGE (22.09) Objectives

Central Geelong is located within the traditional territory of the Wada Wurrung (or Wathaurong) Aboriginal Clan groups.

Wool broking had shaped much of the early architecture.

Large areas of the city centre have streetscape conservation value which is essential as heritage values of the city.

New investment and urban renewal could be attracted to the city centre and provide a creative reuse of the city’s built heritage.

Maintain the visibility of St Mary’s Basilica Spire from beyond the city centre.

Map of Individual heritage listings and precincts

Community Arts and Culture Key Themes:

The cultural arts precinct is home to the Geelong Art Gallery, Library, Heritage Centre, Performing Arts Centre and the Courthouse Youth Arts Centre

Geelong plays host to a number of major events such as cycling, sailing, triathlon and music festivals.

Events

a number of major events such as cycling, sailing, triathlon, music and cruise ship is hold yearly to encourage visitor and activate of the city centre.

Central Geelong Marketing has run activities such as the School Holiday program, Sidewalk Sales and Night Markets that bring in approximately $4 million annually to Central Geelong. There are also regular markets including a farmers market.

Open Space Key Themes:

Johnstone Park is surrounded by a number of important civic buildings: City Hall, Geelong Gallery, Peace Memorial and Regional Libra

Central Geelong features some outstanding parks and public spaces. These include the Geelong waterfront, Eastern Park, Botanic Gardens and Johnstone Park

The new image of Geelong Station Precinct will be vastly different from the one that exists at present. Rather than an open swathe of asphalt punctuated by a few stand alone buildings, it will offer a much more mature identity, one that has the potential to become as much a signature for Geelong as the Waterfront;

RAILWAY STATION PRECINT

The Geelong Railway Station Precinct has long been identified as a major opportunity for change in the Greater City of Geelong. It is Geelong’s hub for state, regional and local transport systems and is ideally located to act as a focus for the western edge of the CBD. It sits strategically between La Trobe Terrace and Mercer Street, two of Geelong’s major inner links, and is close to the Civic and Justice Precincts, Deakin University and the Geelong Waterfront.

 The Precinct is inactive for most of the day, outside of peak hours.

 The precinct will be fully landscaped, to a standard equivalent to the Geelong Waterfront.

 The redevelopment opportunities of the Precinct need to be determined.

 The role of the newly developed Precinct within Geelong needs to be assessed, and

 The sequence for future land development needs to de determined.

BUILT FORM

The Court and Police Station complex was built in 1991 at the south-eastern corner of the Precinct. As the termination point of the axis formed by Fenwick Street and located in such a strategic location, this facility could have made a very positive contribution to its urban context. However this complex of 2 storey brick buildings provides only one active frontage – that to Railway Terrace - while its eastern side
is virtually a blank wall to Mercer Street. Its northern edge acts as its ‘back-of-house’ and is inaccessible to the general public but nevertheless visible from many nearby vantage points.

At the City-wide scale, indicates the existing patterning of urban grid forms in this western Geelong area- the City Centre Grid itself, the slightly offset grid beginning and stretching westwards from La Trobe Terrace, and the Grid formed by Mercer Street and its feeder roads which penetrates into the two main grid forms from the north.

There are relatively few buildings within the Station Precinct, as shown by the Figure Ground Plan. The existing area occupied by the Station facilities, the Victorian Railway Institute building, the Station Courts/ Police and Kia dealership covers only a small proportion of the Precinct; with the remaining area being dominated by access ways and parking.

potential pedestrian link Vehicular link

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