Daily Archives: March 25, 2014

Melbourne in 1954

In 1954 the Melbourne Metropolitan Board of Works produced a film showing the planning challenges that faced Melbourne, that “vast metropolis of one and a half million people”.  The 17 minute film is available in full here:


I was surprised to see so many women in the footage of the city, and despondent to see the absolute dearth of women in the planning offices of the MMBW.  I had a chuckle at the apocalyptic music that accompanied scenes of traffic jams and am puzzled by the footage of new suburbs which look a bit like West Heidelberg or perhaps Ashwood with their housing commission homes.  The images of the slums must predate their demolition and replacement by the inner city high-rise Housing Commission flats.

I wonder what happened to the survey conducted by all those university students? I mourn the loss of planning for the “rural zone around the city”.

Well worth a look!