Hoddle Grid Retail Streets Design Research

The Central Melbourne Retail Study investigates the design qualities of popular shopping and dining streets. We explored and documented the specific building attributes that create active and engaging streets in order to inform the design of our client's future developments. Our research focused specifically on the ground floor interface which has the greatest impact on the quality of the street, establishing clear design principles that can be implemented across a range of urban settings.

Clustering of popular restaurants on Liverpool Street creates intensity along the street.

The research identified the key design attributes that were consistent across successful environments. We looked at a number of precincts that are commercially successful and which have longevity as the popular 'go-to' places in Melbourne. Our findings were framed around the conceptual elements of intensity, identity, signifiers, visual richness and functionality. The study also produced a summary of metrics, including frontage width, depth of premises, ratio of frontage width to depth and internal floor area that contribute to the creation of a successful streets and laneways.

Layering of signage along Crossley Street, Melbourne contributing to visual richness.
Elevation of Spring Street identifying successful aspects of selected retail frontages.

This research creates deeper insights into an ongoing design discussion about how to deliver successful street and laneways in a central city context.

Ornate door handle at the entrance to Sapphire House on Crossley Street, Melbourne.

Related Projects

Central Melbourne Sunlight Report

Fishermans Bend Employment Precinct Plan

Housing Choices Australia Social Impact Framework

Housing Choices Australia is working to design and implement a framework to understand and measure what broader benefits result from residents having access to safe, secure and affordable housing. Hodyl & Co worked with Housing Choices Australia to collaboratively design a unique Impact Measurement Framework that meets the needs of the people that they house and their organisation as a whole.

This work will enable Housing Choices Australia to develop an evidence-base across a range of measures to support the growth of their organisation to meet the needs of an increasing number of people needing access to affordable housing across Australia.

Developing a collaborative approach.