A+B Deakin University Masterclass, T2,2012

Supervisors: Flavia Marcello & Ian Woodcock





7km southwest of Melbourne’s CBD, Newport is located within walking distance of Port Phillip Bay, between the fast-gentrifying inner-western centres of Williamstown and Footscray. Existing freight, metro and regional rail lines and the main road to Williamstown, divide the commercial and residential areas of Newport into three separate precincts. Historically working class, the area is now in a period of transition. From the 1860s, the Newport Rail yards were the main workshops of Victorian Railways and played a key role in the development and identity of the suburb, employing up to 5,000 people. Sections of the original 1880s workshops are still in use today by Metro trains,  railway preservation groups and the Australian Railway Historical Society Museum. The heritage value and the top-lit, large-span spaces provide immense re-use potential from Newport’s Fashion Hub to an Art and Design School to a Living Library for Urban Agriculture. These projects follow in the footsteps of Newport Substation, the most iconic building of the rail yards precinct. After years of neglect it  opened as an arts venue in 2008, after a 15 year restoration process driven by local volunteers. A few minutes walk south of the Newport commercial area, it acts as a catalyst for urban renewal.

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