Monument Park


Monument Park

LocationMelbourne, VIC
ClientMAB Corporation
ServicesLandscape Architecture
Site Area2,000sqm
Budget$2,000,000 AUD

A key strategic development in the revitalisation the New Quay Docklands precinct the space, now occupied by Monument Park, was ear marked for a major public art installation 10 years ago with planning beginning in earnest at the end of 2012. Located in the public open space between the Sant’Elis, Conder Plaza and The Quays Development at NewQuay Docklands, Melbourne. Completed in December 2014, this 2000m2 site has continued MAB’s vision of integrating urban art into the landscape of the NewQuay precinct. Monument Park is Australia’s first capital city sculpture park. Callum Morton’s inspiration was drawn from the Hoddle Grid and the use of reimagined monuments that can be found scattered throughout Melbourne’s CBD. This approach sought to emphasise Docklands not as an isolated precinct but an integral part and extension of the Melbourne CBD. Today, Monument Park’s public open space is used by the community for play, recreation and relaxation. The park combines careful cultural curation, bright contrasting colours and a deliberate blurring of interiority and exteriority that provides urban amenity, encouraging both investigation and appropriation. The gridded surface combines intersecting roads and paths. Tonally contrasting concrete outlines the main roads and laneways from the city blocks, integrated seating walls encourage people to linger longer.

OCULUS, working in collaboration with Callum Morton, and McBride Charles Ryan, the sculpture fabricators GRC Environments and the art curator Charlotte Day, provided leadership in the resolution of the ground plane curation and activation. Monument Park seeks to make connections between people and their urban environment combining, colour and movement through built form, seasonal colonising planting, strong relationships to surrounding buildings and the adjacent streets and wharf. Successfully converting an underutilised plaza into a functional, attractive and more sustainable urban park. The sculptures are overtly grounded in the landscape, what was once an exposed former concrete plaza has been transformed into an engaging terrain for workers, residents and visitors.

A highly collaborative integrated design approach that combines urban art and play encouraging interaction shifting from the purely optical appreciation of art to the haptic tactile, and immersive. The sculpture park is a living landscape that will continue to evolve and change over time though increased use, and as the planting establishes through the changing of the seasons.

Melbourne Design Awards: Gold Winner Urban Design, 2015

AIA Architecture Awards: Small Project Architecture, 2015

Photographer: Nils Koenning