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The social, economic and environmental advantages of providing a diversity of housing choices, close to jobs and services, have been recognized by successive state planning policies. However, these policies have largely failed to provide mixed use, walkable communities near train stations. The current metropolitan strategy, Plan Melbourne, has a much stronger emphasis on creating mixed-use, public transit-oriented ‘employment clusters’ aligned with large educational and health institutions: Parkville (University of Melbourne/RMIT/’hospital precinct’), Monash/CSIRO, and Dandenong Hospital/Chisholm TAFE being three of these activities centre.
East Werribee is an ‘emerging’ Employment Cluster, located south-east of Hopper’s Crossing Train Station. Within 500 metres of that station are Mercy Hospital, South-East Melbourne Primary Care Partnership, the University of Melbourne’s Faculty of Veterinary Sciences, a campus of Victoria University and Suzanne Cory selective entry High School. But it is difficult to walk, cycle or take a bus from the train station to these destinations, there are at present no residential and few commercial uses, and there is very limited public space amenity.
In this studio, aligning our learning process with inter-disciplinary practice collaboration approaches, we will work with an array of industry partners and stakeholders on a set of sites, examining possibilities for healthier and more inclusive public spaces, and better mixed-use development, including possibilities for student and/or health care worker housing. Sarah Backhouse (architecture) and Carolyn Whitzman (planning), will work with Master of Architecture, Masters of Urban Design, and Masters of Urban Planning students to develop a master plan and several in-depth studies.
Intended learning outcomes
On completion of this subject, students should be able to:
- Identify and engage critically with housing diversity and affordability issues related to the intersections of planning policy, public space design, neighbourhood design, building design, and land-use mix;
- Identify and propose creative solutions to planning and design, finance and social barriers to developing transit-oriented mixed-use development, and generate enablers to desired planning and design processes for a particular location;
- Understand the relationships between social problems and spatial forms;
- Understand the relationships between urban policies, regulatory constraints, design parameters, and politics, and propose workable ways of overcoming constraints to programmatic, design and construction innovation; and,
- Communicate a complex vision in a clear and professional manner.
On completion of the subject students should have developed the following skills and capabilities:
- Critical thinking and analysis;
- Ability to seek out, retrieve and evaluate information from multiple sources;
- Understanding and lucid expression of complex concepts in written and oral form;
- Time management skills;
- Appreciation and implementation of the ethics associated with knowledge creation and usage;
- Report writing skills.
Last updated: 16 March 2020