Docklands is a suburb extension to Melbourne’s central business district to the west, and attracts millions of visitors each year. It is bounded by Spencer Street, Wurundjeri Way and the Charles Grimes Bridge to the east, CityLink to the west and Lorimer Street across the Yarra to the south. It is a primarily waterfront area centred on the banks of the Yarra River. Being so close to the city centre, and with several kilometres of Yarra River and Victoria Harbour water frontage, Docklands is a central and attractive place for visitors and residents.
The development of Melbourne’s Docklands was one of Australia’s largest urban renewal projects. Construction started in 1997, and the project has attracted more than $10 billion in private investment to date. Docklands has become a sought-after business address. The business park model of medium-rise office buildings combined with transport and proximity to the City Centre is seen by many in the real estate industry to be one of the reasons behind the success of the Docklands office market.
The area contains a mix of residential housing, and commercial, retail, dining and leisure businesses. There are wide promenades and areas of open space filled with sculptures and contemporary artwork. Docklands is now home to several of Melbourne’s modern landmarks and attractions, including Etihad Stadium, Southern Cross Station, Melbourne Star Observation (Ferris) Wheel, Fox Classic Car Collection and the Victoria Police Museum. The whole family can try their skills on the ice at Medibank Icehouse, bump around in dodgem cars at Wonderland Fun Park or spot Dame Edna on the Walk of Stars – Melbourne’s own walk of fame.
The Bolte Bridge carrying traffic from the city to the northern suburbs and the airport crosses the area. Docklands is also the home to a number of ferry companies and water sports, including dragon boat racing. There is also a local market. Getting here is easy as the free City Circle tram runs along Harbourside Esplanade seven days a week.