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Editions
August 09 Edition Cover

Library likely for Harbour Esplanade

02 Oct 2009

Docklands’ new library and community centre is likely to be in Harbour Esplanade.

The City of Melbourne and VicUrban are looking at two Harbour Esplanade sites and are currently in commercial negotiations.

Harbour Esplanade has been identified in a report to the Docklands Co-ordination Committee as “the civic heart of Docklands”.

The report says a Harbour Esplanade location would help “create greater links between Docklands precincts and the rest of the city”.

The so-called “library and community hub” is proposed to include a library, student study lounge and education and community-related meeting spaces.

VicUrban’s Development Director for Docklands Simon Wilson said VicUrban and the council were hoping to create a contemporary and exciting facility, and had been investigating a range of facilities in modern, technology-orientated centres.

“We’re not just talking about a traditional library, with Melbourne already home to one of Australia’s oldest cultural institutions, the State Library of Victoria,” Mr Wilson said.

“As Docklands continues to change the face of the traditional CBD, we need to ensure the community infrastructure we provide meets the needs of our rapidly growing community now, and into the future.”   

The report said other functions such as a neighbourhood house, outdoor open space, office space, multi-purpose community activity space, studio and workshop space, gallery and exhibition space would also be taken into account.

The library and community hub is one of six identified community infrastructure priorities earmarked for Docklands in the next two to five years.

The other projects are:

  • Social and recreation hub;
  • Community boating hub;
  • Neighbourhood hub;
  • Functional outdoor community meeting space; and
  • Site for a future primary school.

Progress is also currently being made on the social and recreation hub with a needs assessment the next step in the process.

According to the report to the Docklands Co-ordination Committee, the social and recreation hub is intended to be a “modern, sustainable and accessible sports facility in Docklands that promotes community sporting and recreation activities and encourages people of all ages to be more active through sport.”

“The proposed hub is based on indoor courts, a community gym, health and wellness services and complementary uses such as community consulting rooms, activity and meeting rooms.”

The City of Melbourne and VicUrban have agreed to potentially split the facility across two locations with a local health and wellness centre and a regional multi-court centre.

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