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South Melbourne

South Melbourne is an inner suburb of Melbourne, Australia, 3 km south of Melbourne's Central Business District (CBD).

Details

  • Area:2.19 km2
  • Elevation:14 m
  • Population:10,920
  • Local Government Area:Port Phillip City Council

Description

South Melbourne is an inner suburb of Melbourne, Australia, 3 km south of Melbourne's Central Business District (CBD). It is in the local government area of the City of Port Phillip. At the 2016 census, South Melbourne had a population of 10,920. Historically known as Emerald Hill, it was one of the first of Melbourne's suburbs to adopt full municipal status and is one of Melbourne's oldest suburban areas, notable for its well preserved Victorian era streetscapes. The current boundaries are complex. Starting at the east end of Dorcas Street, it runs along the rear of properties on St Kilda Road, then south along Albert Road, north up Canterbury Road, along the rear of the north side of St Vincent Place, zigzags west along St Vincent Street, then north up Pickles Street. There is then an arm of former industrial land to the west between Boundary Road, the freeway and Ferrars Street. It then runs along Market Street to Kingsway, then up Dorcas Street to St Kilda Road. # History Before European settlement, the area now called South Melbourne stood out as largely flat with central hill (where the Town Hall now stands) surrounded by swampy land to the north and south. The hill was a traditional social and ceremonial meeting place for Aboriginal tribes. The area was first settled by Europeans in the 1840s and became known as Emerald Hill. During the Victorian Gold Rush of 1851 a tent city, known as Canvas Town was established. The area soon became a massive slum, home to tens of thousands of fortune seekers from around the world. Land sales at Emerald Hill began in 1852, and while the hill itself was reserved as the site for an orphanage, Canvas Town was soon replaced by cottages, including many that were prefabricated overseas in timber and corrugated iron. Independence from the City of Melbourne was granted when Emerald Hill was proclaimed a borough on 26 May 1855. In 1857, Melbourne's second railway line, to St Kilda, was created running through the new municipality. The new municipality developed rapidly and by 1872 Emerald Hill was proclaimed a town. By the 1870s, parts of South Melbourne became a favoured place of residents for the wealthy, particularly in St Vincent Gardens, Melbourne's best London style residential square (which mostly lies in Albert Park), but most of the locality was developed with more modest single storey terraces and cottages, some in timber. The orphanage on the hill relocated in 1878, and the crest of the hill become the site of the South Melbourne Town Hall, built between 1879 and 1880, and designed in suitable grandeur to evoke the city's booming status, establishing a civic heart at Bank Street. In 1883 Emerald Hill became a city, changing its official name to South Melbourne. South Melbourne experienced a decline in the 1950s as Melbourne sprawled outwards. Like many other Melbourne inner city suburbs, during the 1960s, the Housing Commission of Victoria stepped in and erected several high-rise public housing towers including the earliest high rise, Emerald Hill Court, and the tallest, Park Towers (c.1969). They soon housed some of Melbourne's postwar migrants, who also lived in the many modest cottages, adding a multicultural flavour to the area. In the 1980s, like other inner suburban areas, South Melbourne's gentrification got under way, and many of the terrace houses and cottages were renovated and a new middle class moved in. From the 1990s, the industrial districts of South Melbourne, closer to the city, and including Southbank, have been redeveloped with mid and high rise apartments; in 1996 the most intensively developed part of Southbank was transferred to the City of Melbourne. At the same time, the City of South Melbourne was amalgamated with the Cities of St Kilda and Port Melbourne to create the City of Port Phillip. # Weather # Things to do

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