Nancy Williams

Footscray Exchange: Transport and Transitional Housing

New migrants rely heavily on the public transport system to settle in Melbourne. Yet, gentrification induced displacement is forcing low-income households out of inner-city areas and away from key public transport networks. The negative effects of gentrification not only cause direct physical displacement of marginalised social groups, but also trigger indirect displacements such as social exclusion and notions of ‘out-of-placeness’ (Shaw & Hagemans, 2015).

Simultaneously, transport hubs have been identified as negatively impacting community wellbeing (Vichealth, 2006). Commuters often experience heightened feelings of unpleasantness and social isolation caused by the transport experience.

This thesis aims to address social and cultural erasure in Footscray by designing a transport hub that hosts migrant transitional housing. The proposal will create a symbiotic relationship between the hub’s dwellers and commuters through enabling moments of interaction at the train platform. The platform is reimagined as a community space that hosts employment opportunities for migrants and facilitates a positive waiting experience for commuters.

Please visit my exhibition for the full panels: