State Government Victoria

Transforming the Yarra – Walking Tour iPhone Application

30 years ago the banks of the Yarra River were little more than a post-industrialised waste-land. Melbourne had turned its back on the Yarra despite its history as the site of first settlement.

Then, in the early 1980s, came a bold vision to restore the river as the centre of Melbourne's public life, with the South Bank as its cultural and recreational heart.

Spearheaded by the Cain Government's Planning and Environment Minister, Professor Evan Walker AO and departmental secretary Professor David Yencken AO, the plan for the development of South Bank was born, and a strategy set for landscaped promenades lined by public buildings, restaurants and open spaces filled with art.

Professor David Yencken AO said "By the start of the 1980s this part of the river was an area crying out for attention. Its wonderful opportunities were ignored: its closeness to the city's heart, its intimacy of scale and its sunny northfacing south bank."

The strategy developed in the 1980s sought to make the river a central part of the experience of the city centre, to capitalise on its many qualities and to make the river frontages as attractive as possible to people.

To honour the original vision for rejuvenation and commemorate the development of Melbourne's Yarra precinct, a free iPhone application Transforming the Yarra has been released to download.

Transforming the Yarra app

Transforming the Yarra iPhone Application

Transforming the Yarra is a multimedia walking tour that celebrates the tale of the Yarra's rejuvenation as told by the people who made it happen.

Transforming the Yarra features accounts from many of the architects, urban designers and planners who worked towards realising the potential of the Yarra River corridor.

Interviews include:

-Professor The Honourable Evan Walker AO
-Professor David Yencken AO
-Professor Rob Adams, Director City Design, City of Melbourne
-Geoff Hogg, Director, Art for Public Spaces RMIT University

The original plan for transformation has continued with projects such as the Convention Centre, Birrarung Marr and the redevelopment of Hamer Hall, which focuses on opening up the arts precinct to the Yarra.

Once a grim industrialised site, the banks of the Yarra River have been re-vitalised into the focal point for culture and innovation in Melbourne.

Download the Transforming the Yarra iPhone app using the free wi-fi at Fed Square or go to i-tunes. More information, including extended interviews, can be found at Major Projects Victoria - Transforming the Yarra

















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