Art For Heart’s Sake: Major CBD Laneways Renewal Starts

27 November 2020

Work has begun on a landmark project to revitalise Melbourne’s famous laneways as the CBD prepares to welcome back more workers, shoppers and tourists over summer.

Minister for Employment Jaala Pulford and City of Melbourne Lord Mayor Sally Capp visited Russell Place today as local artist Kaff-eine progressed a signature design that along with an audio element by local band Screensaver will enliven a walk down the popular lane.

Russell Place is the first of 40 CBD, Carlton and North Melbourne laneways that will receive a makeover through a program supported by the Andrews Labor Government’s Working for Victoria initiative.

More than 150 creatives – designers, music producers, light specialists, technicians and more – are being recruited with works to begin soon on revivals of Barry Place, Bright’s Place, Park Street, Finlay Alley, Hughs Alley, Smythe Lane, Kirks Lane, Crombie Lane, Goldie Place and Westwood Place.

The new-look lanes will draw people into the city and stimulate activity in local shops, bars and cafes as restrictions on office-based work and gatherings are gradually lifted, guided by public health advice.

In a further CBD boost, the Labor Government today announced that an additional 160 jobseekers would be employed through Working for Victoria to support the economic recovery of city businesses.

The program will provide support to CBD businesses to help them open or reopen. Workers will assist hospitality venues in maintaining new outdoor dining areas, allowing traders to focus on their customers and growing their business.

The new roles will provide COVIDSafe advice, distribute face masks, promote safety information and ensure partitions and temporary seating for outdoor dining are kept clean.

Since launching in April, the Working for Victoria initiative has created more than 11,000 jobs. For more information or to register for Working for Victoria, go to Link .

Quotes attributable to Minister for Employment Jaala Pulford

“These two great programs will provide a tremendous boost to the city while giving hundreds of workers the chance to get back earning a wage.”

“We know that having work provides benefits beyond the bank balance and that’s why we invested billions of dollars in the Budget to create jobs for Victorians – and lots of them.”

Quote attributable to Minister for Creative Industries Danny Pearson

“We’re re-energising the city, getting creative workers and artists back to work and supporting our thriving laneway culture now and into the future.”

Quote attributable to City of Melbourne Lord Mayor Sally Capp

“Melbourne is famous for its laneways – we have more than 200 of them – and for our creative culture. This project will get our cultural life buzzing again and create more than 150 jobs.”

Reviewed 27 November 2020

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