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Melbourne
Melbourne
Locations in Melbourne as well as where it is located in Australia.
Population 4,246,345 (Metropolitan area)
Established 30 August 1835
Area 9,990 km2 (3,857.2 sq mi)
Time zone AEST
State electorate(s) 54 electoral districts and regions
Federal Division(s) 23 Divisions
Melbourne City Centre is the hub of the greater metropolitan area and the Census statistical division—of which "Melbourne" is the common name. As of June 2011, the greater geographical area had a population of 4.1 million. Inhabitants of Melbourne are called Melburnians or Melbournians.

The metropolis is located on the large natural bay known as Port Phillip, with the city centre positioned on the estuary of the Yarra River (at the northernmost point of the bay). The metropolitan area then extends south from the city centre, along the eastern and western shorelines of Port Phillip, and expands into the hinterland. The city centre is situated in the municipality known as the City of Melbourne. The metropolitan area consists of a further 30 municipalities.

Melbourne was founded in 1835 (47 years after the European settlement of Australia) by settlers from Launceston in Van Diemen's Land. It was named by Governor of New South Wales Sir Richard Bourke in 1837, in honour of the British Prime Minister of the day, William Lamb, 2nd Viscount Melbourne. Melbourne was officially declared a city by Queen Victoria in 1847. In 1851, it became the capital city of the newly created colony of Victoria. During the Victorian gold rush of the 1850s, it was transformed into one of the world's largest and wealthiest cities. After the federation of Australia in 1901, it served as the interim seat of government of the newly created nation of Australia until 1927.

Untitled

Melbourne located in Victoria

Often referred to as the "Garden City" and "cultural capital of Australia", Melbourne is the birthplace of cultural institutions such as Australian film (as well as the world's first feature film), Australian television, Australian rules football, the Australian impressionist art movement (known as the Heidelberg School) and Australian dance styles such as New Vogue and the Melbourne Shuffle. It is also a major centre for contemporary and traditional Australian music.

Melbourne was ranked as the world's most liveable city in ratings published by the Economist Group's Intelligence Unit in August 2011 and again in 2012. It was also ranked in the top ten Global University Cities by RMIT's Global University Cities Index (since 2006) and the top 20 Global Innovation Cities by the 2thinknow Global Innovation Agency (since 2007).[ The metropolis is also home to the world's largest tram network. Melbourne Airport, the main passenger airport, is the second busiest in Australia and the Port of Melbourne is Australia's busiest seaport for containerised and general cargo. 


History of Melbourne

Early history and foundation

800px-Landing at melbourne 1840

Melbourne Landing, 1840; watercolour by W. Liardet (1840)

Before the arrival of European settlers, the area was occupied for an estimated 31,000 to 40,000 years by under 20,000 hunter-gatherers from three indigenous regional tribes: the Wurundjeri, Boonwurrung and Wathaurong. The area was an important meeting place for the clans of the Kulin nation alliance and a vital source of food and water. The first European settlement in Victoria was established in 1803 on Sullivan Bay, near present-day Sorrento, but this settlement was abandoned due to a perceived lack of resources. It would be 30 years before another settlement was attempted.

In May and June 1835, the area which is now central and northern Melbourne was explored by John Batman, a leading member of the Port Phillip Association in Van Diemen's Land (now called Tasmania), who negotiated a purchase of 600,000 acres (2,400 km2) with eight Wurundjeri elders. Batman selected a site on the northern bank of the Yarra River, declaring that "this will be the place for a village". Batman then returned to Launceston in Tasmania. In early August 1835 a different group of settlers, including John Pascoe Fawkner, left Launceston on the ship Enterprize. John Pascoe Fawkner was forced to disembark at Georgetown, Tasmania because of outstanding debts. The remainder of the party continued and arrived at the mouth of the Yarra River on 15 August 1835. On 30 August 1835 the party disembarked and established a settlement at the site of the current Melbourne Immigration Museum. John Batman and his group arrived on 2 September 1835 and the two groups ultimately agreed to share the settlement.

Batman's Treaty with the Aborigines was annulled by the New South Wales government (which at the time governed all of eastern mainland Australia), which compensated the association. In 1836, Governor Bourke declared the city the administrative capital of the Port Phillip District of New South Wales, and commissioned the first plan for the city, the Hoddle Grid, in 1837. Later that year the settlement was named "Melbourne" after the British Prime Minister, William Lamb, 2nd Viscount Melbourne, whose seat was Melbourne Hall in the market town of Melbourne, Derbyshire. On 13 April 1837, the settlement's general post office was officially opened with that name.

Between 1836 and 1842, Victorian Aboriginal groups were largely dispossessed of territory bigger than England By January 1844, there were said to be 675 Aborigines resident in squalid camps in Melbourne. Although the British Colonial Office appointed 5 "Aboriginal Protectors" for the entire Aboriginal population of Victoria, arriving in Melbourne in 1839, they worked ". . . within a land policy that nullified their work, and there was no political will to change this". "It was government policy to encourage squatters to take possession of whatever [Aboriginal] land they chose, . . . that largely explains why almost all the original inhabitants of Port Phillip's vast grasslands were dead so soon after 1835". By 1845, fewer than 240 wealthy Europeans held all the pastoral licences then issued in Victoria and became the patriarchs " . . . that were to wield so much political and economic power in Victoria for generations to come".

Melbourne was declared a city by letters patent of Queen Victoria, issued on 25 June 1847. The Port Phillip District became the separate Colony of Victoria in 1851, with Melbourne as its capital. With the Aboriginal population dispossessed of their lands and their management of fire having been disrupted for almost 15 years, the Colony experienced for the first time its largest-ever bushfires, burning about 25% of the land area of Victoria on Black Thursday on 6 February 1851.

 Victorian gold rush

Canvas town south melbourne victoria 1850s

"Canvas Town", South Melbourne in the 1850s depicting temporary accommodation for the thousands who poured into Melbourne each week during the gold rush.

The discovery of gold in Victoria in 1851 led to the Victorian gold rush, and Melbourne, which served as the major port and provided most services for the region, experienced rapid growth. Within months, the city's population had increased by nearly three-quarters, from 25,000 to 40,000 inhabitants. Thereafter, growth was exponential and by 1865, Melbourne had overtaken Sydney as Australia's most populous city

An influx of interstate and overseas migrants, particularly Irish, German and Chinese, saw the development of slums including a temporary "tent city" established on the southern banks of the Yarra. Chinese migrants founded a Chinatown in 1851, which remains the longest continuous Chinese settlement in the Western World. In the aftermath of the Eureka Rebellion, mass public support for the plight of the miners in Melbourne resulted in major political changes to the colony. The various nationalities involved in the Eureka Stockade revolt and Burke and Wills expedition give some indication of migration flows in the second half of the nineteenth century.

The population growth and flow of gold into the city helped stimulate a program of grand civic building beginning with the design and construction of many of Melbourne's surviving institutional buildings including Parliament House, the Treasury Building and Treasury Reserve, the Old Melbourne Gaol, Victoria Barracks, the State Library, Supreme Court, University, General Post Office, Government House, Customs House the Melbourne Town Hall, St Paul's, St Patrick's cathedrals and several major markets including the surviving Queen Victoria Market. The city's inner suburbs were planned, to be linked by boulevards and gardens. Melbourne had become a major finance centre, home to several banks, the Royal Mint to Australia's first stock exchange in 1861. Grand private buildings also were built in this era, including the Athenaeum Hall and several large hotels. The aboriginal population continued to decline with an estimated 80% total decrease by 1863, due primarily to introduced diseases, particularly smallpox, frontier violence and dispossession from their lands.

Land boom and bust

The economic boom of the Victorian gold rush peaked during the 1880s, by which time Melbourne had become the richest city in the world, and the largest after London in the British Empire. Melbourne hosted two international exhibitions at the large purpose-built Exhibition Building between 1880 and 1890, spurring the construction of several prestigious hotels including the Menzies, Federal and the Grand (Windsor).

In 1855 the Melbourne Cricket Club secured possession of its now famous ground, the MCG. Australian Football commenced in earnest about 1858, and Yarra rowing clubs and "regattas" became popular about the same time. In 1861 the Melbourne Cup was first run. In 1864 Melbourne acquired its first public monument—the Burke and Wills statue.

In 1880 a telephone exchange was established and in the same year the foundations of St. Paul's Cathedral were laid; in 1881 electric light was installed in the Eastern Market building, and in the following year a generating station capable of supplying 2,000 incandescent lamps was in operation.

In 1885 the first cable tram in Melbourne was built. Cable tramways were in general use until the 1920s, when they were superseded by electric motors. Electric trams were introduced into the suburbs in 1906.

During a visit in 1885 English journalist George Augustus Henry Sala coined the phrase "Marvellous Melbourne", which stuck long into the twentieth century and is still used today by Melburnians. Growing building activity culminated in a "land boom" which, in 1888, reached a peak of speculative development fuelled by consumer confidence and escalating land value. As a result of the boom, large commercial buildings, coffee palaces, terrace housing and palatial mansions proliferated in the city. The establishment of a hydraulic facility in 1887 allowed for the local manufacture of elevators, resulting in the first construction of high-rise buildings; most notably 1889's APA (The Australian) Building, the world's tallest office building upon completion and Melbourne's tallest for over half a century. This period also saw the expansion of a major radial rail-based transport network.

A brash boosterism that had typified Melbourne during this time ended in 1891 with a severe depression of the city's economy, sending the local finance and property industries into a period of chaos during which 16 small banks and building societies collapsed and 133 limited companies went into liquidation. The Melbourne financial crisis was a contributing factor in the Australian economic depression of the 1890s and the Australian banking crisis of 1893. The effects of the depression on the city were profound, although it recovered enough to grow slowly during the early twentieth century.

Federation of Australia

502px-Federal Coffee Palace Melbourne

The Federal Coffee Palace; one of many temperance hotels erected in the late 19th century

At the time of Australia's federation on 1 January 1901, Melbourne became the seat of government of the federation. The first federal parliament was convened on 9 May 1901 in the Royal Exhibition Building, subsequently moving to the Victorian Parliament House where it was located until 1927, when it was moved to Canberra. The Governor-General of Australia resided at Government House in Melbourne until 1930 and many major national institutions remained in Melbourne well into the twentieth century.=== Post-war period===

In the immediate years after World War II, Melbourne expanded rapidly, its growth boosted by Post war immigration to Australia, primarily from Southern Europe and the Mediterranean. While the "Paris End" of Collins Street began Melbourne's boutique shopping and open air cafe cultures, the city centre was seen by many as stale, the dreary domain of office workers, something expressed by John Brack in his famous painting Collins St., 5 pm (1955).

Height limits in the Melbourne CBD were lifted in 1958, after the construction of ICI House, transforming the city's skyline with the introduction of skyscrapers. Suburban expansion then intensified, serviced by new indoor malls beginning with Chadstone Shopping Centre. The post-war period also saw a major renewal of the CBD and St Kilda Road which significantly modernised the city. New fire regulations and redevelopment saw most of the taller pre-war CBD buildings either demolished or partially retained through a policy of facadism. Many of the larger suburban mansions from the boom era were also either demolished or subdivided.

To counter the trend towards low-density suburban residential growth, the government began a series of controversial public housing projects in the inner city by the Housing Commission of Victoria, which resulted in demolition of many neighbourhoods and a proliferation of high-rise towers. In later years, with the rapid rise of motor vehicle ownership, the investment in freeway and highway developments greatly accelerated the outward suburban sprawl and declining inner city population. The Bolte government sought to rapidly accelerate the modernisation of Melbourne. Major road projects including the remodelling of St Kilda Junction, the widening of Hoddle Street and then the extensive 1969 Melbourne Transportation Plan changed the face of the city into a car-dominated environment.

Australia's financial and mining booms between 1969 and 1970 resulted in establishment of the headquarters of many major companies (BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto, among others) in the city. Nauru's then booming economy resulted in several ambitious investments in Melbourne, such as Nauru House. Nauru, which had become incredibly wealthy thanks to the selling of phosphate, began the Nauru Phosphate Royalties Trust (NPRT) to re-invest profits in international real-estate. Melbourne remained Australia's main business and financial centre until the late 1970s, when it began to lose this primacy to Sydney.

As the centre of Australia's "rust belt", Melbourne experienced an economic downturn between 1989 to 1992, following the collapse of several local financial institutions. In 1992 the newly elected Kennett government began a campaign to revive the economy with an aggressive development campaign of public works coupled with the promotion of the city as a tourist destination with a focus on major events and sports tourism. During this period the Australian Grand Prix moved to Melbourne from Adelaide. Major projects included the construction of a new facility for the Melbourne Museum, Federation Square, the Melbourne Exhibition and Convention Centre, Crown Casino and the CityLink tollway. Other strategies included the privatisation of some of Melbourne's services, including power and public transport, and a reduction in funding to public services such as health, education and public transport infrastructure.

Contemporary Melbourne

Since the mid-1990s, Melbourne has maintained significant population and employment growth. There has been substantial international investment in the city's industries and property market. Major inner-city urban renewal has occurred in areas such as Southbank, Port Melbourne, Melbourne Docklands and more recently, South Wharf. According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, Melbourne sustained the highest population increase and economic growth rate of any Australian capital city in the three years ended June 2004. These factors have led to population growth and further suburban expansion through the 2000s.

From 2006, the growth of the city extended into "green wedges" and beyond the city's urban growth boundary. Predictions of the city's population reaching 5 million people pushed the state government to review the growth boundary in 2008 as part of its Melbourne @ Five Million strategy. In 2009, Melbourne was less affected by the Late-2000s financial crisis in comparison to other Australian cities. At this time, more new jobs were created in Melbourne than any other Australian capital—almost as many as the next two fastest growing cities, Brisbane and Perth, combined, and Melbourne's property market remained strong, resulting in historically high property prices and widespread rent increases.

Geography

 
598px-Greater Melbourne Map 4 - May 2008

Map of Greater Melbourne

Topography

Melbourne is located in the south-eastern part of mainland Australia, within the state of Victoria. Geologically, it is built on the confluence of Quaternary lava flows to the west, Silurian mudstones to the east, and Holocene sand accumulation to the southeast along Port Phillip. The southeastern suburbs are situated on the Selwyn fault which transects Mount Martha and Cranbourne.

Melbourne extends along the Yarra River towards the Yarra Valley and the Dandenong Ranges to the east. It extends northward through the undulating bushland valleys of the Yarra's tributaries—Moonee Ponds Creek (toward Tullamarine Airport), Merri Creek, Darebin Creek and Plenty River—to the outer suburban growth corridors of Craigieburn and Whittlesea.

The city reaches south-east through Dandenong to the growth corridor of Pakenham towards West Gippsland, and southward through the Dandenong Creek valley, the Mornington Peninsula and the city of Frankston taking in the peaks of Olivers Hill, Mount Martha and Arthurs Seat, extending along the shores of Port Phillip as a single conurbation to reach the exclusive suburb of Portsea and Point Nepean. In the west, it extends along the Maribyrnong River and its tributaries north towards Sunbury and the foothills of the Macedon Ranges, and along the flat volcanic plain country towards Melton in the west, Werribee at the foothills of the You Yangs granite ridge and Geelong as part of the greater metropolitan area to the south-west.

Melbourne's major bayside beaches are located in the south-eastern suburbs along the shores of Port Phillip Bay, in areas like Port Melbourne, Albert Park, St Kilda, Elwood, Brighton, Sandringham, Mentone and Frankston although there are beaches in the western suburbs of Altona and Williamstown. The nearest surf beaches are located 85 kilometres (53 mi) south-east of the Melbourne CBD in the back-beaches of Rye, Sorrento and Portsea.

Melbourne is also the world's 25th largest city by land-mass, following St. Louis, Moscow and Pittsburgh, at 2,080 square kilometers.

 Climate

Melbourne has a moderate oceanic climate  and is well known for its changeable weather conditions. This is mainly due to Melbourne's location situated on the boundary of the very hot inland areas and the cold southern ocean. This temperature differential is most pronounced in the spring and summer months and can cause very strong cold fronts to form. These cold fronts can be responsible for all sorts of severe weather from gales to severe thunderstorms and hail, large temperature drops, and heavy rain.

Port Phillip is often warmer than the surrounding oceans and/or the land mass, particularly in spring and autumn; this can set up a "bay effect" similar to the "lake effect" seen in the United States where showers are intensified leeward of the bay. Relatively narrow streams of heavy showers can often affect the same places (usually the eastern suburbs) for an extended period of time, while the rest of Melbourne and surrounds stays dry. Overall, Melbourne is, owing to the rain shadow of the Otway Ranges, nonetheless drier than average for southern Victoria. Within the city and surrounds, however, rainfall varies widely, from around 425 millimetres (17 in) at Little River to 1,250 millimetres (49 in) on the eastern fringe at Gembrook.

Melbourne is also prone to isolated convective showers forming when a cold pool crosses the state, especially if there is considerable daytime heating. These showers are often heavy and can contain hail and squalls and significant drops in temperature, but they pass through very quickly at times with a rapid clearing trend to sunny and relatively calm weather and the temperature rising back to what it was before the shower. This occurs often in the space of minutes and can be repeated many times in a day, giving Melbourne a reputation for having "four seasons in one day", a phrase that is part of local popular culture and familiar to many visitors to the city.

Melbourne is colder than other mainland Australian state capital cities in the winter. The lowest temperature on record is −2.8 °C (27.0 °F), on 4 July 1901. However, snowfalls are rare: the most recent occurrence of sleet in the CBD was on 25 July 1986 and the most recent snowfalls in the outer eastern suburbs and Mount Dandenong were on 10 August 2005. More commonly, Melbourne experiences frosts and fog in winter.

Melbourne summers are notable for occasional days of extreme heat. This occurs when the synoptic pattern is conducive to the transportation of very hot air from central Australia over to the south east corner of the continent. The inland deserts of Australia are amongst the hottest areas on earth, particularly the inland parts of north-west Australia. Every summer, intense heat builds starting in the Pilbara district of Western Australia around October/November and spreading widely over the tropical and subtropical inland parts of the continent by January. In the summer months, the southern part of the continent straddles the westerly wind belt to the south and the subtropical high pressure ridge to the north. The intense heat buildup occurs where high pressure is highly dominant in the upper levels of the atmosphere over the tropics and subtropics of Australia in summer allowing for a huge area of stable atmospheric conditions to predominate. On occasion a strong cold front will develop in summer and bring the westerlies further north than their mean summer position. On these occasions, north-west winds will develop ahead of the cold front's passage and sometimes these can be very strong, even gale force. When this occurs the hot air from the inland is dragged right down over south east Australia, occasionally even as far as southern Tasmania. As this air mass is carried entirely over the continental land mass it remains unmodified, i.e. it does not pick up additional moisture from a body of water and retains most if not all of its heat. On these occasions, the normally temperate parts of southern Victoria, including Melbourne, can experience the full fury of the desert climate albeit only briefly as the cold front responsible usually passes through relatively quickly allowing cool southerly winds from the southern ocean to replace the hot desert air. The highest temperature recorded in Melbourne city was 46.4 °C (115.5 °F), on 7 February 2009.

Climate data for Melbourne
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °C (°F) 45.6
(114.1)
46.4
(115.5)
41.7
(107.1)
34.9
(94.8)
28.7
(83.7)
22.4
(72.3)
23.1
(73.6)
26.5
(79.7)
31.4
(88.5)
36.9
(98.4)
40.9
(105.6)
43.7
(110.7)
46.4
(115.5)
Average high °C (°F) 25.9
(78.6)
25.8
(78.4)
23.9
(75.0)
20.3
(68.5)
16.7
(62.1)
14.1
(57.4)
13.5
(56.3)
15.0
(59.0)
17.2
(63.0)
19.7
(67.5)
22.0
(71.6)
24.2
(75.6)
19.9
(67.8)
Average low °C (°F) 14.3
(57.7)
14.6
(58.3)
13.2
(55.8)
10.8
(51.4)
8.6
(47.5)
6.9
(44.4)
6.0
(42.8)
6.7
(44.1)
8.0
(46.4)
9.5
(49.1)
11.2
(52.2)
12.9
(55.2)
10.2
(50.4)
Record low °C (°F) 5.5
(41.9)
4.5
(40.1)
2.8
(37.0)
1.5
(34.7)
−1.1
(30.0)
−2.2
(28.0)
−2.8
(27.0)
−2.1
(28.2)
−0.5
(31.1)
0.1
(32.2)
2.5
(36.5)
4.4
(39.9)
−2.8
(27.0)
Rainfall mm (inches) 47.6
(1.874)
48.0
(1.89)
50.3
(1.98)
57.4
(2.26)
55.8
(2.197)
49.0
(1.929)
47.5
(1.87)
50.0
(1.969)
58.1
(2.287)
66.4
(2.614)
60.4
(2.378)
59.5
(2.343)
650.0
(25.591)
Avg. rainy days 8.4 7.5 9.4 11.8 14.6 15.4 16.1 16.1 14.9 14.2 11.8 10.4 150.6
Mean monthly sunshine hours 279.0 234.9 210.8 168.0 120.9 108.0 114.7 145.7 171.0 195.3 210.0 232.5

2,190.8

Urban structure

Melbourne Skyline from Rialto Equirectangular Crop - Nov 200

A panoramic view of Melbourne's CBD with urban sprawl towards Mount Dandenong

The centre of Melbourne's central business district is formed by the Hoddle Grid (dimensions of 1 by 0.5 miles (1.6 by 0.80 km)). The grid's southern edge fronts onto the Yarra River. Office, commercial and public developments in the adjoining districts of Southbank and Docklands have made these redeveloped areas into extensions of the CBD in all but name. The city centre is well known for its historic and prominent lanes and arcades (the most notable of which are Block Place and Royal Arcade) which contain a variety of shops and cafés and are a byproduct of the city's layout.

Melbourne's CBD, compared with other Australian cities, has comparatively unrestricted height limits and as a result of waves of post-war development contains five of the six tallest buildings in Australia, the tallest of which is the Eureka Tower, situated in Southbank. It has an observation deck near the top from where you can see above all of Melbourne's structures. The Rialto tower, the city's second tallest, remains the tallest building in the old CBD; its observation deck for visitors has recently closed.

The CBD and surrounds also contain many significant historic buildings such as the Royal Exhibition Building, the Melbourne Town Hall and Parliament House. Although the area is described as the centre, it is not actually the demographic centre of Melbourne at all, due to an urban sprawl to the south east, the demographic centre being located at Glen Iris.

Melbourne is typical of Australian capital cities in that after the turn of the 20th century, it expanded with the underlying notion of a 'quarter acre home and garden' for every family, often referred to locally as the Australian Dream. This, coupled with the popularity of the private automobile after 1945, led to the auto-centric urban structure now present today in the middle and outer suburbs. Much of metropolitan Melbourne is accordingly characterised by low density sprawl, whilst its inner city areas feature predominantly medium-density, transit-oriented urban forms. The city centre, Docklands, St. Kilda Road and Southbank areas feature high-density forms.

Melbourne is often referred to as Australia's garden city, and the state of Victoria was once known as the garden state.There is an abundance of parks and gardens in Melbourne, many close to the CBD with a variety of common and rare plant species amid landscaped vistas, pedestrian pathways and tree-lined avenues. There are also many parks in the surrounding suburbs of Melbourne, such as in the municipalities of Stonnington, Boroondara and Port Phillip, south east of the central business district. The extensive area covered by urban Melbourne is formally divided into hundreds of suburbs (for addressing and postal purposes), and administered as local government areas 31 of which are located within the metropolitan area.

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