Renew Australia hits Melbourne’s Docklands

December 11, 2012

Following the success of the Renew Newcastle initiative, Renew Australia’s ‘Docklands Spaces’ project is giving creatives the opportunity to utilise otherwise empty spaces in Melbourne’s Docklands.

Following the success of the Renew Newcastle initiative, community renewal enterprise Renew Australia have announced their pilot initiative in Melbourne: Docklands Spaces.

Commissioned by the City of Melbourne, MAB Corporation and Places Victoria, Docklands Spaces, much like Renew Newcastle, aims to activate currently under-utilised spaces in Docklands by incubating short-term uses by creative enterprises and independent bodies on a rent-free basis.

Renew Australia are calling for expressions of interest from all kinds of creatives to fill the spaces. From the website: “Renew Australia is seeking makers, designers, photographers, printmakers, painters, illustrators, architects, milliners, jewellers, publishers, laptop businesses, animators, video or music makers, and other creative types.”

In his blog, Renew Newcastle founder Marcus Westbury articulates the concept of the initiative: “The point of Renew projects collectively … is not simply to pop up and disappear or to put forward a powerful provocation. It is instead to introduce a layer of experimentation and activity to the city and to build on that over time.”

He continues, “The  ‘renew’ approach to renewal and revitalisation is not to design outcomes, or exciting short term blips, but to facilitate an iterative process that empowers individuals and local communities to experiment. Through iteration, accumulation and trial and error such an approach ideally gets to a working and successful place, through trial and error in the most cost-effective and efficient way possible.”

Those selected will be granted short-term access to a variety of retail and office spaces in the Docklands Piazza precinct. The first spaces will be occupied from late January 2013.

For more information or to register interest, visit

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