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21 Dec 2022

Melbourne’s Second City Plan Is Gaining Traction

Melbourne’s Second City Plan Is Gaining Traction

It has been an unusual Australian spring season.

Although floods was a worry and the weather had been erratic, many individuals were more focused on inflation, interest rates, and the damage they were doing on an industry already struggling due to Covid-19.

What industry, what state, what suburb was the greatest place to invest, they wondered?

Dandenong was where they weren't searching, but a developer was.

According to Mohan Du, managing director of Capital Alliance, "Dandenong is distinct because all the land has been accumulated for the developer to come in with a vision to deliver on it."

A ten-year concept of $1.5 billion mixed-use precinct is undertaken by Capital Alliance.

“Can you make sure that if you have cobblestones, that they are graded so that people with mobility aids can use them?” 

A community member from Dandenong poses the query.

Members of the Capital Alliance development team take notes as she looks into her camera.

This meeting is a community consultation for the $600-million, 15-year Revitalise Central Dandenong project, which aims to revitalize the area around the Dandenong Train Station.

A masterplan has been created, and it is currently being refined with input from the community, council, and other stakeholders.

Once completed, it will be sent to the Victorian planning minister for approval before to being displayed to the general public.

“It will see the area transformed with residential dwellings, community spaces, commercial offices, a hotel and conference centre, an entertainment precinct and a new Little India retail and dining precinct,” says Niall Cunningham, the Development Victoria’s acting precincts group head.

Vasan Srinivasan, a trustee for the Federation of Indian Associations Victoria, recalls a time when VicUrban had a strategy for development in Dandenong.

“We managed to brand Little India with VicUrban’s support" claims Srinivasan.

That was back in 2009, when plans to enlist investors and establish a museum were also afoot.

But after that, the Victorian government held a public tender in 2019, and Capital Alliance's offer was chosen in 2020.