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Local workers snub Docklands

29 Nov 2011

Local workers snub Docklands Image

Docklands workers are “homing pigeons” returning to the CBD in preference to other parts of Docklands during their working days.

This “heat map” compiled by consultants UrbanTrans shows their destinations nominated for lunch, shopping or meetings during their working days.

Victoria Harbour and South Wharf show as a faint glow as the most popular Docklands destinations, but the hot-spot for Docklands’ workers is clearly the CBD quadrant bounded by Swanston, Little Bourke, Queen and Collins streets.

The survey was conducted by consultants UrbanTrans between July and August this year to inform the Docklands Transport Plan, which is expected to be released in the first quarter of next year.

The transport plan was commissioned by Places Victoria (formerly VicUrban) and the City of Melbourne in partnership with the Department of Transport, the Department of Planning and Community Development and VicRoads.

More than 25 per cent of the 18,000 Docklands workers contacted responded to the survey.

UrbanTrans describes the “heat map” as “the locations visited most frequently by Docklands workers during the workday in a typical week”.

The map presents a challenge to NewQuay’s hospitality outlets and the 160 retailers at Harbour Town, who are about one third the distance from the workers’ favourite sites but which failed to register any change of colour.

The results have given extra urgency to supporters of a ferry service running from Victoria Harbour to Waterfront City.

But Docklands Chamber of Commerce president Keith Rankin says there may not be a problem.

“It’s not a marketing study.  It’s a traffic study,” he said.  “I don’t believe it is indicating a problem because of the specific nature of the study.”

“It is a fabulous opportunity to find out why these people are travelling to these areas of the city from Docklands.”

“Is the purpose for their journey able to be fulfilled within the Docklands?”

“And the study doesn’t point out how many people are travelling from the city into Docklands at the same time,” he said.

“Therefore, the study asks more questions than it answers.”

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