Better Places Place Guide projects

Better Places - Brunel Street render


Council’s sector leading Better Places program provides a more holistic and integrated approach to thinking about and designing for change into the future. Better Places takes a more placed-based approach - thinking in terms of overall ‘places’ rather than individual ‘pieces’.

Better Places actively involves the community in the process of shaping the place they live in, collaborating to create a vision that not only reflects their values and ideas, but also provides practical ideas and clear steps towards turning the vision into real ‘on the ground’ improvements into the future. This all culminates in a ‘Place Guide’ for each project area – a comprehensive list of place projects that will bring the community’s vision to life.

After extensive community consultations through 2020 and 2021, the Better Places program has developed 12 priority projects in the Better Places Laverton Place Guide and 16 priority projects in the Better Places Spotswood and South Kingsville Place Guide. Community consultation is underway for the Brooklyn/Altona North Better Places.

Council invites funding partnerships with the Victorian and Australian Governments to support the implementation of Hobsons Bay’s Better Places projects across Laverton, Spotswood/South Kingsville, and Brooklyn/Altona North.

Better Places - Hope and Hudson streets Spotswood render

Better Places - Hope and Hudson streets Spotswood render 



• Create approx. 40+ full time jobs through design and construction of projects, plus local sourcing of material where possible

• Create approx. 75 local jobs (direct jobs) and 50 (indirect jobs) on an ongoing basis (dependent on business mix)

• Activate a number western Melbourne’s trading and lifestyle precincts, increasing local business patronage/participation and tourism/events across the region, while contributing to pandemic related recovery

• Strengthen the economy of the region by providing greater access to jobs and services across the west and metro Melbourne

• The holistic economic impact is to be confirmed, dependent on the types of future residential and

business growth. The potential range is $20-50 million per year.


• Enhanced leadership/agency within community to drive local outcomes

• Better usage of open space and connect missing links across suburbs

• Increased take up in walking/cycling on bike paths and shared trails for commuter trips and recreation activities

• Increased physical/mental health and wellbeing outcomes and reduced likelihood of chronic disease and obesity

• Access for all abilities through purposefully designed infrastructure

• Improved housing and employment options

• Enhanced sense of value in community heritage and history


• Reduce traffic congestion and greenhouse gas emissions

• Emissions caused by cars are 3 times more per passenger kilometre than trains 1

• A cyclist who rides 10km each way to work can save 1.5 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions a year. Cycling during peak periods also helps reduce emissions by moving more people more efficiently. Cycling also creates little noise and reduces the need to build, service and dispose of cars 2

• Encourage sustainable and integrated transport options

• Greener public spaces

• Environmentally Sensitive Design (ESD) of projects where possible



Progress of Better Places is based on key collaborative partnerships:

• State and federal government Ministers and Members of Parliament (MP’s)

• Environmental/Planning/Public Transport/Roads and Road Safety sectors, LeadWest

• Local developers, local industry and traders, local arts community, local cycling community groups, local sustainability and transport advocacy groups



The Advocacy Action Plan for Better Places includes:

• Meetings and engagement with state and federal government Ministers, MP’s and department representatives

• Publicity across traditional and digital channels

• Call to action for community

• Community engagement and public events presence

• Funding and grant submissions



Better Places connects with the below policies and strategies:

• Victorian Government’s Infrastructure Victoria Strategy 2021-51 recommendations

• Victorian Government’s Plan Melbourne 2017-50

• Victorian Government’s Cycling Strategy 2018-28 and Climate Change Strategy

• Victorian Government’s $21 million Urban Parks Active Wellbeing Program

• Connects to MAV Strategic Plan 2021-25



Progression of Better Places is underpinned by Council’s commitments including:

• Council Plan 2021-25 commitment

• Council Budget allocation

• Hobsons Bay Integrated Transport Plan 2017-30

• Climate Change Policy, Community Greenhouse Strategy 2013-30, Environmentally Sustainable Development Policy Statement