MELBOURNE City Council's Future Melbourne Committee this month endorsed the Swanston Street redevelopment design concept and approved the commencement of Stage One, which will see a new civic space incorporating a platform tram stop constructed in front of the State Library Victoria, between Little Lonsdale and La Trobe Streets.
A further report will be presented to Councillors prior to Stage Two work commencing in mid 2011. That report will respond to any further issues that impact on specific stakeholders including trams, delivery and service vehicles, taxis, buses, horse drawn vehicles, as well as retaining Swanston Street as a key parade street.
As reported last month, the $25.6 million Swanston Street plan aims to create a world-class promenade with private cars and taxis banned by 2012 and encouragement of additional pavement-based activity including outdoor cafes and innovative retail. It is to feature a seamless civic space with dedicated bike lanes and four new public spaces incorporating tram stops, new street furniture including public seating, ceremonial lighting, additional trees and planter boxes and public artworks
"This is the beginning of the renaissance of central Melbourne. The redevelopment of Swanston Street has seen us re-think the street's entire civic environment to create a coherent, consistent plan that ties the whole street together" said Lord Mayor Robert Doyle.
"Pending the outcomes of the road closure process, work on the first new civic space at the State Library forecourt is expected to commence later this year and to be completed in early 2011," the Lord Mayor said.