Elsternwick Cultural Precinct
Glen Eira City Council is developing the detailed design for a new pedestrian friendly, cultural precinct in Elsternwick.
Glen Eira City Council is developing the detailed design for a new pedestrian friendly, cultural precinct in the heart of Elsternwick. With Glen Eira being home to Australia’s largest Jewish community, this provides a unique opportunity to create a precinct that celebrates Jewish life in Melbourne.
Council had extensively engaged with stakeholders to determine the scope and concept for the cultural precinct and established the Elsternwick Cultural Precinct Advisory Committee (ECPAC) to oversee the design and align plans for their organisations with the Vision for the precinct.
Several projects are underway in the precinct area which will impact on stakeholders including a school, businesses, arts and cultural organisations, Yarra Trams and local residents, as well as the design and development of the precinct.
Council engaged Comacon’s Senior Consultant to develop and write a communications and engagement plan which will support Council to consult more broadly with the Elsternwick community and seek their input on how they would like to use the cultural precinct. This includes gathering feedback on what the look and feel of the space should be, the design and location of a commemorative artwork for the space and the design of a road intersection. The plan also needed to ensure a coordinated approach for Council when engaging the community and develop consistent key messages.
Comacon undertook extensive desk top research of stakeholders and the engagement and feedback to date, before developing a two-stage engagement approach for the detailed design phase, including face to face and online feedback options, keeping in mind COVID-19 safety requirements. The first stage of the approach includes developing personas to help the community consider how different people might use the space, and seeking feedback on specific elements of the plan through several targeted stakeholder meetings and consultation sessions. The approach also leverages the One Voice Jewish Cultural Street Festival as an avenue to engage with the community (pending the COVID-19 situation at the time). The second phase involves an online survey where the community will receive a virtual budget that they can use to select specific design materials for the precinct. Council will also regularly report back to the community on how their feedback has contributed to the design.
The feedback from Glen Eira Council was that the plan was very thorough and detailed.
Shannon O’Connell, Senior Communication and Engagement Consultant
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