Community vision for Melbourne’s new public open space

The City of Melbourne is seeking community input on the use and purpose of Market Square – a new 1.5 hectare public open space in the Queen Victoria Market precinct.

Lord Mayor Sally Capp said the community’s views would shape a charter that will help design and manage Market Square.

“Creating 1.5 hectares of new public open space in Melbourne’s CBD is a rare opportunity and we want to hear from the community to make sure we get it right,” the Lord Mayor said.

“This space could be used to host community events and activities, provide space for people to stop and relax after shopping or be a spot for local residents and workers to connect and relax.

“Everyone is invited to have their say on what they want included as part of the new Market Square and we are looking forward to considering new and innovative proposals for this space.”

Chair of the Arts, Culture and Heritage portfolio Councillor Rohan Leppert said the charter will guide decision making on the use and ongoing management of this new community asset.

“Market Square will be a vital public space for the current and future residents of the growing City North area, as well as precinct visitors and market customers. It will complement the Queen Victoria Market and be a drawcard for the precinct through community events and activities,” Cr Leppert said.

“Large open spaces like Federation Square and Birrarung Marr have changed the way Melburnians interact, offering space for people to gather and enjoy all the city has to offer.

“We have a responsibility to ensure this important open space reflects the social and cultural values of city residents, workers and visitors today, and remains relevant for future generations.”

Melbourne’s central city is experiencing a population boom, with the number of residents expected to double from 52,000 in 2019 to 109,000 by 2041. Market Square will complement existing spaces, such as Flagstaff Gardens and the State Library forecourt, which are already in high demand.

The development of Market Square is part of the agreement between the Victorian Government and City of Melbourne to support the revitalisation of the market precinct.

Market car parking will be relocated nearby, with 500 spaces at the Munro development, already under construction and due for completion in 2021, and up to 500 spaces at the proposed Southern Development site.

The Market Square Charter will be open for community input from 14 October until 1 November 2019 via Participate Melbourne: participate.melbourne.vic.gov.au/queenvictoriamarket.

This initial round of consultation will be followed by a second round of community consultation in the first half of 2020 on the design of Market Square.

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