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Title: Refacing the city: The Melbourne Docklands
Contributor(s): Wood, Stephen (author)orcid 
Publication Date: 2005
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Abstract: 'The Docklands development involves the most dramatic change to Melbourne's central area in 100 years. It is the sort of opportunity that rarely presents itself, an opportunity to change not just the face of the city, but its life and character as well.' So begins the first planning framework for the Melbourne Docklands, in 1989, introducing what would become a recurring motif in ensuing planning processes: the opportunity presented by the Docklands to 'reface' Melbourne. In its earliest incarnations, this metaphor referred principally to the central city's physical orientation: "gradually the development of Docklands could come to change the way Melbourne 'faces' so that it is perceived as a waterfront city at the confluence of the Yarra, the Harbour and the bay." However, it also captured the idea of using the Docklands to face up to social disadvantage in Melbourne's western suburbs: 'We've had our back turned on the west for too long', the then Premier confessed. That said, any associations with social justice were short lived, soon subsumed by the idea of giving Melbourne a makeover: the Docklands development would affect not just 'the western end of the city, but also the general image of Melbourne.' Around the same time, the refacing refrain was linked to the prospect of changing Melbourne's economic profile and its orientation to the global economy: 'the Melbourne Docklands present an opportunity to create a new part of Melbourne which looks outward to the world'. Becoming 'Melbourne's front door to the world', the Docklands would act as a kind of 'switching point for trade and commerce'.
Publication Type: Book Chapter
Source of Publication: Suburban fantasies: Melbourne unmasked, p. 50-67
Publisher: Australian Scholarly Publishing
Place of Publication: Melbourne, Australia
ISBN: 174097090X
Field of Research (FOR): 120504 Land Use and Environmental Planning
120507 Urban Analysis and Development
120599 Urban and Regional Planning not elsewhere classified
HERDC Category Description: B1 Chapter in a Scholarly Book
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Appears in Collections:Book Chapter
School of Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences

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