Urban Design Studio B/C
Living Locally

Neighbourhoods (can) survive and thrive in the pandemic

Studio leaders: Dr Nano Langenheim, Dr Marjan Hajjari, Dr Jane Homewood and Professor Alan Pert


Neighbourhoods are playing a crucial role in shaping the lives of individuals, health and wellbeing of the communities and liveability of the cities. The principle of living locally —20-minute neighbourhoods in Plan Melbourne seeks to deliver more inclusive, vibrant and healthy places which highlights the importance of neighbourhoods as local political and economic entities.

The recent COVID-19 pandemic has changed the way people live in and interact within their neighbourhoods. The adaptation of the places and their response to the crisis, however, is considerably influenced by the socio-economic, political and physical structure of the cities in general and the neighbourhoods in particular.

This studio explored the concept of living locally in three established neighbourhoods in Metropolitan Melbourne with divergent physical, social and economic context. Senior staff from the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning, The Department of Health and Human Services and local councils Moonee Valley and City of Moreland worked with the students to explore the questions of vibrant, well-connected neighbourhoods, with consideration of diversity, affordability and employment to develop urban strategies that respond to COVID 19 in various urban contexts across Melbourne.

In this studio, students implemented the 20 minute neighbourhood concept, in physically and socially contrasting case study sites, using urban analysis and modelling techniques to identify priority elements and design responses in each urban setting.

Urban Design 2020_summer