Why we love East Melbourne

11 March 2022

Locals describe East Melbourne as a small village of friendly neighbours, and an oasis. Green spaces and streetscapes, beautiful 19th century heritage homes and modern architecture all grace the East Melbourne landscape.

Alongside tranquil residential precincts, there is also an epic scale to East Melbourne.

Parliament House, the Old Treasury Building and St Patrick’s Cathedral are all found in the west.

Turn south to explore Melbourne’s sports and entertainment precinct, including Melbourne Park, AAMI Park and the world-famous Melbourne Cricket Ground.

The area that East Melbourne sits on has rich Aboriginal heritage and continuing cultural significance. Many sites are mapped in the Mapping Aboriginal Melbourne project.

Around Yarra Park and the MCG, for example, is a traditional gathering place for the Wurundjeri Woi-wurrung peoples of the Eastern Kulin.

Three of six scarred trees in the City of Melbourne are found in Yarra Park. Scarred trees provide a living connection to Aboriginal peoples’ ancestors and cultural practices, and are significant objects of both tangible and intangible cultural heritage.

East Melbourne is home to about 5800 people, comprising 3 per cent of the municipality’s total population.

  • Median age: 42, the highest among all neighbourhoods in the City of Melbourne.
  • Residents aged between 25 and 34 make up most of the population.
  • A third of residents were born overseas.
  • Almost a fifth of residents speak a language other than English at home, compared with 53 per cent of residents in the broader municipality.

More than 550 businesses are based in East Melbourne, generating some 26,000 jobs. Many medical specialists have rooms in the area, close to local hospitals.

At the heart of community life is the ecologically sustainable East Melbourne Library. More than 33,000 people visited this public library over the past year, browsing more than 26,000 library books, magazines and audio-visual items, making use of bookable spaces and the community garden.

Local parks can be discovered like jewels across the suburb. Powlett Reserve is a municipal park boasting a five-court tennis facility, and a 51-place childcare centre and kindergarten.

Moments of reflection and adventure can be found in significant open spaces including Treasury Gardens and Fitzroy Gardens, where City of Melbourne manages Cooks’ Cottage, the Visitor Information Centre and The Pavilion.

Together with the MCG and surrounding Yarra Park, these open spaces form part of the green belt that wraps around the city.

A neighbourhood Future Melbourne Committee meeting will be held in East Melbourne on Tuesday 15 August 2023. You can also get to know the local area in the East Melbourne Neighbourhood Portal.

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