Unless you're heading to Higher Ground, Holey Moley or court, you probably don't spend much time in the CBD's bottom-end western pocket. Those four blocks between La Trobe, William, Bourke and Spencer streets have largely been subject to construction and big business and, as a result, have less buzz and character than other areas in the CBD. But now, design-savvy locals have the chance to change all that, thanks to a new competition by the Urban Land Institute (ULI).
Having described the area as suffering from "a lack of identity, limited on-street activity outside of business hours, little open public space and community amenity", the international research and education think tank has set out to find someone brimming with ideas for its transformation.
The area up for development, supplied by the Urban Land Institute.
If you're an architect, urban planner or developer under the age of 35, you're invited to put forward your own thoughts on how to improve these lacklustre four blocks, through the 2018 Urban Innovation Ideas Competition. The hunt is on for proposals that would help boost the area's vibrancy, improve safety and transform it into what ULI calls a "24-hour neighbourhood".
The point of the competition is to give young people a forum to discuss and visually express what they would like their city to look like. While the winning design won't be heading into development anytime soon, the winner will get the chance to present their idea at the 2019 ULI Asia Pacific Summit in Shanghai and potentially influence the future development of the City of Melbourne.
Now in its third year, Urban Innovation Ideas Competition has previously seen entrants reimagine Sydney's George Street (2015) and put forward ideas for revamping the area linking Brisbane's CBD and Fortitude Valley (2016). The 2018 competition is open to both individuals and groups of four.
ULI Melbourne Urban Innovation Ideas Competition opens at 9am on Friday, August 24 and closes on September 18. You can enter here.