The Indian Cultural Precinct Taskforce met on 30 August and received early insights into the community consultation process. A draft Indian Cultural Precinct Framework for Melbourne’s premier Indian Precinct in Dandenong will be presented to the Taskforce on 26 September by Council consultants Sinatra Murphy, and will be publically shared for community and stakeholder feedback in November.
The Governor of Victoria her Excellency The Honourable Linda Dessau AC and her husband Mr Anthony Howard QC met members of the Indian Taskforce at the August meeting.
The Governor was keen to hear more about efforts underway in Dandenong recognising that it is Melbourne’s premier Indian precinct for all Victorians.
The Governor, who is travelling to India in September, was interested in forming connections and understanding key issues that can provide for a stronger working relationship with the Indian and Sub-Continent communities particularly in the areas of business, innovation and education.
The community has also responded well to the opportunity to take part in establishing a shared vision for the precinct.
In July and August community workshops were held to discuss ideas for short term and longer term improvements to the precinct. These were attended by over 50 people with additional ideas and suggestions received through the on-line platform ‘Our Say’.
Experienced consultant Phin Murphy from Sinatra Murphy P/L facilitated the visioning exercise and provided detailed information on the physical, cultural, social and investment context that surrounds Dandenong’s Indian Precinct.
Greater Dandenong sits within a catchment of more than 58,000 Indian, Bangladeshi, Pakistani, Sri Lankan and Fijian people that includes Casey, Monash and Kingston council’s, and more than $255 million has been invested in the nearby precinct through construction leveraged by Development Victoria.
There are more than 60 Indian origin businesses in central Dandenong and some 20 of these are co-located in Little India, and pedestrian volumes in the nearby precinct reach up to 15,400 per week.
Across all stakeholder groups who took part in the community consultation workshops there was consistent support for key directions which included the need for curation, festivals and events, and ‘the complete trade experience’.
Sinatra Murphy is now working through all the comments and suggestions recorded at each session to establish a community led shared vision, a set of precinct objectives, and short, medium and longer term actions plans.
Head to website www.greaterdandenong.com for further information on the precinct and regular updates.