Focusing on public realm improvements and future design options for Princes Pier, the document addresses six strategic areas along the Port Melbourne waterfront and the interface with the Beacon Cove residential development. These include: Sandridge Beach; Princes Pier forecourt; Beacon Cove promenade, and the entrance to Station Pier and waterfront place; the profile of Beach Street and its relationship with Bay Street.
The fundamental principles are: Precinct approach Cultural setting, Build on intrinsic character of the waterfront, Destination, Energy and vitality, Mix of uses, Quality of public space, Affordable and feasible
A significant proportion of the document has been structured around a Design Matrix of four generic Pier and promenade permutations. This yields a lattice of sixteen different hybrid configurations, and generates a landscape for informing different strategic planning structures, which respond to the surrounding context, setting, and scale of the port in various ways.
The advantages of developing a range of generically different options, as opposed to a single Master Plan, at the outset of the design process, is that an extensive array of architectural, urban design, planning and landscape proposals can be generated.
This tends to broaden the horizon in appreciating the opportunities and constraints of a particular precinct, and assists various stakeholder groups in appreciating the relative implications of different lines of development.
More information on the Urban Heart Design Research Group @ Deakin
Phillip Loone is Senior Strategic Planner at the City of Port Phillip in Melbourne. Dr John Rollo and Yolanda Esteban are at the School of Architecture and Building, Deakin University.