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Creating a more liveable Melbourne

The ‘Creating a More Liveable Melbourne’ report was developed based on the outcomes from the 2018 20-minute neighbourhood pilot program.

It details the benefits of creating walkable 20-minute neighbourhoods, along with key findings and recommendations. It establishes a ‘roadmap’ for government to deliver 20-minute neighbourhoods.


The recommendations found in the report are grouped into themes:

  • Policy – embedding 20-minute neighbourhoods in decision-making
  • Place – guidance to design liveable places
  • Partnerships – connecting government, industry, and communities.

The 20-minute neighbourhoods team has been working to implement these recommendations through a range of projects.

Municipal strategic planning project

The Municipal Strategic Planning Project (MSPP) is delivering better planning for neighbourhood activity centres. $70,000 grants will support activity centre network planning across 5 different municipalities.

We are excited to be partnering with the following councils:

  • Banyule
  • Darebin
  • Maroondah
  • Moonee Valley
  • Whittlesea.

A competitive expressions of interest process preceded the selection of partner councils.

MSPP projects will test new neighbourhood planning tools and approaches on-the-ground. Partner councils have designed their projects to meet local needs and priorities. The projects will also inform the development of future guidance to ensure it is robust and fit-for-purpose.

2018 pilot program

In January 2018, the Minister for Planning launched the 20-Minute Neighbourhood Pilot Program. The aim was to embed a whole-of-government approach to 20-minute neighbourhoods in established neighbourhoods.

Pilot projects were delivered in:

  • Strathmore by the Moonee Valley City Council
  • Croydon South by the City of Maroondah; and
  • Sunshine West by City of Brimbank.

The 2018 pilot program was successfully led by DELWP in partnership with the Heart Foundation (Victoria), Victoria Walks and local government.

Neighbourhood reports

The pilot program report ‘Creating a More Liveable Melbourne’ was released in August 2019. The report details the benefits of creating walkable 20-minute neighbourhoods, along with key findings and recommendations from the pilot program.

Neighbourhood reports have also been developed for Croydon South, Strathmore and Sunshine West.

Progressing community priorities in pilot sites

In response to the challenges of COVID19 in 2020, temporary activation and longer-term transformational concept plans were prepared for each pilot site. They responded to community priorities raised in the 20-minute neighbourhood pilot program.

The temporary activations enabled immediate COVID-19 recovery responses through low-cost and easy-to-implement activations that support local traders and the community. They were the first step in developing the pilot sites as 20-minute-neighbourhoods and provided an opportunity to trial possible permanent interventions.

Activation plans

20-minute neighbourhood geography curriculum resources

We have partnered with the Geography Teachers' Association of Victoria to develop curriculum resources and a GIS-based design challenge.

The curriculum resources are available across Victoria and align the liveability and place curricula with the concept of 20-minute neighbourhoods. The resources encourage students to develop ideas and re-imagine their own 20-minute neighbourhood.

The Senior Primary ‘Understanding Your Place: 20-minute neighbourhoods' resource recently won a Highly Commended award at the Australian Geography Teacher’s Association 2022 annual conference.

A year 9/10 resource ‘Understanding Wellbeing and Connectivity’ will be released in early 2023.

More information at Geography Teachers' Association of Victoria Inc.

C40 students reinventing cities

Melbourne joined the cities participating in the C40 organisation international student competition, Students Reinventing Cities. The competition aims to involve university students in reimagining a small area as a sustainable thriving, community.

Find out about the 2022/23 competition – submissions have now closed.

Find out about the 2020/21 competition winners Students Reinventing Cities 2020-2021.

MapIt! design competition

The MapIt! design competition asks Year 7/8 students from across Victoria to get out and assess their local area against the 20-minute neighbourhood hallmarks and ideas around liveability and submit a design entry to reinvent their neighbourhood.

More information about the MapIt! design competition.

Page last updated: 01/07/24