What is the South Melbourne Structure Plan?
The City of Port Phillip has prepared a new South Melbourne Structure Plan ('the Plan'), in draft form. The Plan will establish a long-term vision for the future of South Melbourne and identify actions to manage change and help respond to challenges such as climate change, population growth and COVID-19.
At its Wednesday, 7 February 2024 meeting, Council unanimously endorsed the draft South Melbourne Structure Plan for consultation. We are now inviting feedback on the draft South Melbourne Structure Plan (SMSP) from 19 February 2024 to 28 March 2024. During this period, we encourage you to review the draft SMSP and associated documents and provide us with any feedback on the draft findings and recommendations, prior to its finalisation.
What does the Structure Plan do?
The draft South Melbourne Structure Plan sets out the long-term strategic vision for South Melbourne and an action plan on how it will be achieved. It is an integrated, long-term framework to guide change over the next 20 years including:
- future land use
- types and heights of buildings
- improved transport and how people can access and move around the area
- open spaces and parks
- infrastructure improvements
- character of the area including heritage
- economic opportunities.
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The South Melbourne Structure Plan will be guided by the vision, as well as the four main themes.
Vision for South Melbourne
Uniquely South Melbourne – a flourishing, welcoming and creative community
Recognised as a meeting place on the traditional lands of the Kulin Nation in Naarm / Melbourne, South Melbourne continues to be one of Melbourne’s great social hubs and dynamic economies. People from all backgrounds are welcome to live, work and visit this vibrant, liveable and diverse community, located in between Melbourne’s CBD and the beaches of Port Phillip. The network of walkable, green streets and comfortable public spaces, combined with valued heritage places and attractive buildings, provide a variety of memorable destinations, productive businesses, creative industries and local services. South Melbourne is a unique blend of the past and present – and is always looking to the future
The four main themes are:
South Melbourne has emerged in the last 20 years as a centre for Melbourne’s creative industries. This, coupled with the strong presence of professional and financial services, along with retail, hospitality and personal services, highlight the significance of South Melbourne’s contribution to the local and regional economy.
The South Melbourne Employment, Economic and Land Use Study (Urban Enterprise, November 2023) highlights that South Melbourne’s economic success has been partly driven by:
- Favourable land use zoning and development opportunities, especially land in the Commercial 2 Zone
- Its strategic location proximate to the Central City, south-eastern suburbs, western suburbs and beyond.
- Transport connectivity including:
- Key roads such as Kings Way and the West Gate Freeway
- Public transport
- Cycling infrastructure
- Recognition for creative and technology businesses
- An established activity centre with a vibrant retail and hospitality scene
- Sought-after residential opportunities within South Melbourne itself and the neighbouring precincts of Southbank, Domain and Montague.
The following objectives and actions under this theme will help deliver the vision for South Melbourne, represented spatially below:
- Protect and enhance local strengths such as heritage, mid rise built form and genuine mix of land uses (Activities and Uses Objective 1).
- Protect a critical mass of employment land to support a thriving Enterprise Precinct (Activities and Uses Objective 1).
- Retain, support and grow South Melbourne’s economic specialisations and retail opportunities, and accommodate ongoing demand for office space in South Melbourne (Activities and Uses Objective 2).
- Provide opportunities for ongoing reinvestment, mixed use development and new employment floorspace in areas close to public transport, especially within walking distance to Anzac Station and Park Street tram upgrade. (Activities and Uses Objective 3).
- Provide a range of affordable business spaces which suit micro, small and medium businesses (Activities and Uses Objective 4).
- Capitalise on the popularity of the South Melbourne Market to create a thriving street-based retail precinct (Activities and Uses Objective 5).
- Accommodate the housing needs of a welcoming, resilient and future focused community (Activities and Uses Objective 6).
- Community infrastructure to enhance social connection (Activities and Uses Objective 7).
Theme 2: Built Form and Building Design - A place where quality design enhances South Melbourne’s distinct characteristics.
The character of South Melbourne will continue to evolve as development pressure increases. With increasing demand for varied workplaces and residences, South Melbourne will continue to be a highly attractive location for public and private sector investment.
The Structure Plan’s approach to developing a built form and heritage framework has been informed by extensive technical analysis including, the South Melbourne Built Form Review (Hodyl & Co, July 2023) (Review) and the South Melbourne Major Activity Centre & Employment Precincts Heritage Built Form Analysis & Recommendations (GJM Heritage, June 2023).
The recommended planning policy and controls will seek to effectively manage this increasing development pressure while also striking a balance between accommodating population and employment growth, preserving heritage, minimising amenity impacts, and improving livability. This framework will provide a higher level of clarity and certainty for the City and the wider community on the preferred outcomes sought for the area.
The design objectives and actions under this theme will guide how buildings are designed by:
- Ensuring development is responsive to the local context and character (Built Form and Building Design Objective 1).
- Contributing to engaging and walkable precincts (Built Form and Building Design Objective 2).
- Providing high-amenity housing and workplaces (Built Form and Building Design Objective 3).
- Integrating climate responsive design (Built Form and Building Design Objective 4).
Each objective includes the preferred built form and heritage outcomes for key design elements, such as (but not limited to) Floor Area Ratio (FAR), building height, heritage, internal amenity, street wall height, upper-level setback, solar access to the public realm, and building separation.
Please refer to interactive map below, for further information and overview of the four (4) built form precincts.
Theme 3: Access and Movement - South Melbourne is a place that is connected and easy to move around for all
As activity intensifies in South Melbourne, competition for road space among people who use motor vehicles, ride a bike, walk or use public transport will also increase. A proactive and balanced approach is essential to effectively manage access to and within South Melbourne, mitigating congestion.
The objectives and actions under this theme will help deliver the vision for South Melbourne by:
- Enhancing South Melbourne’s movement network to prioritise sustainable and active travel, while improving capacity and circulation (Access and Movement Objective 1).
- Providing an attractive and safe local pedestrian and cycling network that connects key destinations and strategic corridors (Access and Movement Objective 2).
- Improving public transport services and access to meet the needs of South Melbourne’s residents, workers and visitors (Access and Movement Objective 3).
- Car parking and loading approaches support more sustainable modes of transport and reduce the impacts of development generated parking demand (Access and Movement Objective 4).
The key technical reports and strategies underpinning the objectives and actions under this theme are:
Theme 4: Public Spaces and Places - South Melbourne will be a place with a welcoming and creative community that celebrates its diversity and shares its stories supported by attractive, vibrant, climate-resilient and people-friendly public spaces
South Melbourne’s public realm plays a vital role in connecting people to destinations and activities, providing spaces for individuals to pause, meet, and rest during their journey. The area’s roads, footpaths, shared laneways and parks contribute to the distinctive streetscape character, enhancing the overall environment through incorporation of greenery, shade, and weather protection
The following objectives and actions under this theme, and summarised below will help deliver the vision for South Melbourne:
- Create cool, green streets for people to improve amenity, comfort and public health (Public Spaces and Places Objective 1)
- Be water-wise to effectively respond to climate change, and protection of assets and property (Public Space and Places Objective 2)
- Shape public spaces to support a variety of uses and enterprises (Public Spaces and Places Objective 3)
- Reinforce civic pride and sense of place (Public Spaces and Places Objective 4).
The key technical reports and strategies underpinning the objectives and actions under this theme are:
Overview of Built Form Precincts:
Four precincts have been identified to deliver place-specific outcomes for South Melbourne. Please click on the red dot, to view the specific recommendations for your property.
The recommended zones generally reflect existing zones. Rezoning recommendations are limited to rezoning the 'City Road Industrial Triangle' from Industrial 1 Zone to Commercial 2 Zone and correcting zoning anomalies. View more on the recommended rezoning of sites within the South Melbourne Structure Plan study area.
Draft South Melbourne Structure Plan
Previous Engagement Reports
Provide your feedback on the draft South Melbourne Structure Plan!
The following survey will ask for your feedback on the key themes and objectives of the draft South Melbourne Structure Plan. If you would like to take part in giving feedback on all four themes, please tick all four boxes below, or alternatively, opt in on which themes you would like to take part in.
This full survey will take approx. 20 minutes to complete. We thank you for your participation in providing feedback on the draft South Melbourne Structure Plan.
You may also upload your submission via the portal below, or alternitively, by submitting your feedback via email (with your name, property address) to: firstname.lastname@example.org