Melbourne's National Employment and Innovation Clusters take another step toward reality

Melbourne's National Employment and Innovation Clusters take another step toward reality
Melbourne's National Employment and Innovation Clusters take another step toward reality

A trio of National Employment and Innovation Clusters now have their framework plans in place and available for viewing, advancing their prospects of becoming enhanced employment hubs in the medium term. 

Released by the Minister for Planning, Richard Wynne, the Sunshine, Monash and La Trobe National Employment and Innovation Clusters are now a step closer to reality. Centred around medical, research and tertiary institutions across Melbourne, the National Employment and Innovation Clusters are deemed nationally significant as they attract workers, students and visitors from both Australia and overseas.

Under the guidance of the Victoria Planning Authority, the clusters will in the future be exposed to increased infrastructure spending and development in order to stimulate higher levels of employment.

Earmarking these localities as National Employment and Innovation Clusters has a multi-pronged effect; least of which is encouraging people to work local and thus somewhat alleviating the burden on Melbourne's stressed road and public transport networks. 

The framework plans are high-level documents that outline key infrastructure investment and changes to planning rules needed to make sure Melbourne has a number of thriving job and innovation hubs – not just the CBD.

Victorian Planning Authority
Melbourne's National Employment and Innovation Clusters take another step toward reality
The Monash Urban Renewal Precincts and Strategic Sites Plan

A cited example involves changing planning laws in order to simplify and stimulate the development of hotels within the Monash Cluster, where they were previously not able to be built under outdated planning rules. Subject to heightened educational, medical and commercial development in recent years, hotel accommodation stands out as the obvious gap in Monash Cluster's development drive.

As a point of reference, Monash Cluster is currently a base for 75,000 workers.

The Victorian Government is committed to growing jobs in our suburbs, so that people spend less time in their cars and more time with loved ones. When businesses form distinct hubs of industry, workers leverage off one another’s ideas, with healthy competition spurring innovation.

Minister for Planning, Richard Wynne

Whilst the Sunshine, Monash and La Trobe's National Employment and Innovation Clusters have their draft framework plans in place, Dandenong South and Werribee East wait in the wings as further clusters.

Further information and respective Draft Framework Plans and be found on the Victoria Planning Authority website.

Melbourne's National Employment and Innovation Clusters take another step toward reality
Sunshine and other clusters spread across Melbourne

Mark Baljak

Mark Baljak

Mark Baljak was a co-founder of He passed away on Thursday 8th of November 2018 after a battle with cancer. He was 37. Mark was a keen traveller, having visited all six permanently-inhabited continents and had a love of craft beer. One of his biggest passions was observing the change that has occurred in Melbourne over the past two decades. In that time he built an enormous library of photos, all taken by him, which tracked the progress of construction on building sites from across metropolitan Melbourne.

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Adam Ford's picture
Could we have some proper discussion around this, rather than just bleating out other people's media releases.
Do we believe these draft development plans are adequate in their scope to facilitate what they are claiming to be able to?
Does it not look obvious to people that they are going to try and to all this stuff with ZERO new enabling public transport infrastructure, and purely rely on the bus network to handle the uplift, and that such is actually planning for failure, or at best the satus quo in terms of PT mode share into the destination.
And given the importance of planning this stuff in an integrated way, shouldn't these documents specifically spell out actual proposed bus routes, service frequency, and meaningful cost projections? Given that would take five minutes to do, have costed basically nothing, and actually turned these documents into effective actual enabling document?
QV Alan Davies' recent "Is Plan Melbourne even actually a Plan?" I'm starting to think the emperor is naked. Clearly the PTV stakeholders sitting around these tables aren't anywhere near senior enough. And I don't think very much other than public transport infrastructure is a success factor in enabling these things, hence the soapbox.
That said, the PUBLIC REALM aspects of this stuff all looks VERY thorough and well done. Also suggesting to me that they're approaching the problem upside down.
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