Urban renewal and economic development
City of Greater Dandenong
The Revitalising Central Dandenong (RCD) initiative is supported by a $290 million commitment from the Victorian Government to transform central Dandenong into a vibrant and thriving economic hub.
The project is expected to attract more than $1 billion in private sector investment, create 5,000 jobs, and enhance Dandenong's appeal as a place to live, work and visit.
Around $700 million has been invested to date to rejuvenate and re-establish Dandenong’s city centre as the capital of Melbourne’s growing south east region.
Melbourne-based developer Capital Alliance has been selected for the next phase of the project that is expected to:
- deliver a new Little India precinct
- inject $600 million into the Dandenong economy during its development and construction phase
- create 2,600 construction jobs
- create around 5,000 ongoing jobs when it is operational
- deliver 470 new dwellings and 2,500 square metres of community space
- deliver new commercial and retail spaces, including a new supermarket and food market hall
- transform central Dandenong into a vibrant and thriving destination
- deliver social enterprise initiatives
- improve public safety and amenity.
Dandenong was once the social and economic centre of Melbourne’s south-east. However, during the 1990s and early 2000s, competition from neighbouring areas resulted in reduced investment in retail, entertainment, and amenity infrastructure.
Development Victoria is working in partnership with the City of Greater Dandenong, state government agencies, and the private sector to achieve the goals of the RCD initiative, encouraging new development and job-creating economic activity.
With Dandenong as its heart, Melbourne's south-east region:
- Produces almost half of Victoria’s manufacturing output
- Is home to more than one million people
- Is home to one in every three jobs in the greater Melbourne area
7ha project area
$1 billion private investment
Halpin Way, Settlers Square and the Pop-Up Park received an award for their contribution to the amenity of central Dandenong at the 2013 Australian Institute of Landscape Architects awards.
The delivery of key infrastructure and seed projects to kick-start Dandenong’s redevelopment are integral to the success of the RCD initiative.
The goal of creating new community spaces and facilities is to bring more people back to central Dandenong.
The RCD project site has been divided into 19 separate sites. Development Victoria is progressively developing these sites in partnership with the private sector.
Key amenities near the project site include:
- Public transport — Dandenong train station and bus interchange
- Recreational reserves and parks — Dandenong Park and Dandenong Creek Trail
- Private and public medical centres and hospitals
- State Government Services Hub
- Dandenong Market — Melbourne’s second oldest and second largest market
- Dandenong Plaza — regional shopping centre
Dandenong is located approximately 30km south-east of Melbourne’s CBD and forms part of the Greater Dandenong Local Government Area (LGA).
The RCD initiative project site spans 7ha of land in central Dandenong, with close proximity to Dandenong Train Station and major arterial roads including Lonsdale Street, Princes Highway and Cheltenham Road.
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Key aspects of the shared vision for the Revitalising Central Dandenong initiative include:
- Inviting streets that provide easy and safer pedestrian connections around the city by day and by night
- Less traffic congestion
- A direct and attractive link connecting the station precinct with the city centre
- Improved public transport
- A compact and lively shopping hub with a variety of shops and places to visit
- A vibrant market well connected to other parts of the city centre
- More people living and working in the city centre
- More opportunities for learning
- Attractive public spaces for people to relax and meet
- High quality building designs, including high standards of environmental sustainability
- A character and identity that reflects the multicultural community
- More life on the streets, colour and green across the city centre
The Revitalising Central Dandenong master plan is the 15 to 20 year framework for delivering on the shared vision.
The master plan builds upon central Dandenong's rich history and heritage as a meeting place, a market town and a centre for business, employment, living, learning and retail. The plan was informed by an extensive community consultation process in 2007.
The Revitalising Central Dandenong declared area includes 170 hectares of land in the heart of the Dandenong CBD. The project acquisition area consists of seven hectares.
The declared area shows where new infrastructure is to be provided and the area directly benefiting from investment. It also takes into account existing and future land use patterns and areas for redevelopment.
The Revitalising Central Dandenong declared area was declared on 26 September 2005.
- Community consultation
- Launch of Metro Village 3175 residential community
- City of Greater Dandenong opens the iconic Drum Theatre
- Shared Vision launched – $290 million funding announced
- Commencement of the Infrastructure Recovery Charge (IRC) as a 5% value capture mechanism, chargeable on total development value
- Community consultation – RCD master plan
- RCD master plan launched
- Grenda Corporation opens new HQ
- City of Greater Dandenong commences Dandenong Market redevelopment
- Completion of Arkana, the first commercial and residential building of its size in central Dandenong in 20 years
- Construction commences on Stockmans Bridge
- Construction commences on transformation of Lonsdale Street into a green and welcoming boulevard
- Grocon commences construction on the Government Services Office
- Dandenong's inaugural participation in the Melbourne Food and Wine Festival
- Opening of a new western entrance, comprising Stockmans Bridge and the realigned George and Walker Streets
- Construction commences on Pop-Up-Park – a new recreational facility on Foster Street
- Construction commences on City Street and Station North Plaza
- Completion of Lonsdale Street transformation
- Pop-Up Park completed
- Completion of City Street and Station North Plaza
- Government Services Office completed
- Halpin Way and Settlers Square completed
- Work commences on new City of Greater Dandenong offices
- Dandenong Station transit interchange completed
- Work commences on the Australian Taxation Office building on Walker Street
- City of Greater Dandenong municipal building completed
- Work commences on the Quest Apartments building
- Completion of Australian Taxation Office
- Investment attraction continues for education, health, commercial and residential
- Completion and opening of Quest Apartments
- Expression of Interest process launched to redevelop sites around Foster Street (Sites 11 to 15)
- Release of Request for Proposal (RFP) to four shortlisted EOI bidders
- Delivery and launch of the multi-sport community park on the corner of Cadle and George Streets
- Capital Alliance selected to deliver next $600 million phase of the redevelopment
Construction commences on the $13.5 million Salvation Army Community Hub (Site 17) development in June 2021. The development will will stimulate the Dandenong economy and create 200 jobs during construction, delivering community spaces, a place of worship, retail and office space. Once complete, this project will activate the site by providing retail and vital community services and generate a real community feel. The project will also enhance the use of the community sport court delivered by Development Victoria next door.
The Salvation Army and City of Greater Dandenong hosted a sod turning event for the new $13.5m Salvation Army Community Hub development on Site 17 - 7 July 2021.
Australian Taxation Office
The new ATO building on a site between Walker Street and Halpin Way.
State Government Services Office
A stimulating new office development in central Dandenong establishing government services in one easily accessible location.
The City of Greater Dandenong's new municipal building features an integrated community library and a civic plaza (Harmony Square) which includes seating, green space, plantings and a giant screen.
Dubbed the Federation Square of the south east, the civic plaza will feature screenings and events throughout the year and is a great meeting space.
Halpin Way is named after Sister Ann Halpin (1939—2009), an active community member who founded the Wellsprings for Women drop-in centre and improved opportunities for refugee and migrant women in the Dandenong area. Together with Settlers Square, Halpin Way provides an improved link for pedestrians and cyclists between Dandenong railway station and the city centre.
The transformation of the city’s main street into a green, pedestrian-friendly boulevard.
The multi-sport community court has opened on the corner of Cadle and George Streets. The multi-sport court can play host to a range of sports including basketball, netball and futsal.
Security features include lighting and CCTV, to keep the facility is safe and secure. The multi-sport court was built following a successful trial of a ‘pop-up’ park, at a site to the south along Foster Street, Dandenong.
Settlers Square provides a well-lit and active public meeting and event space for local residents, workers and visitors.
The square’s name acknowledges the early settler activity that established Dandenong’s reputation as a gateway.
A new western entrance into central Dandenong, crossing the railway line and linking Cheltenham Road with central Dandenong.
A $22 million 55-bed serviced apartment building, with commercial and retail space on the ground floor.
The City of Greater Dandenong’s new municipal building in central Dandenong includes a public square with seating and a giant screen, as well as a regional library, and council offices.
Stage: Complete, Project duration: 2011- 2014, Architect: Lyons Architects, Developer: City of Greater Dandenong.
Development Victoria took five parcels of land with a total area size of close to two hectares, to market through an Expression of Interest (EOI) process. Following a robust assessment process, four shortlisted bidders were invited to submit a Request for Proposal (RFP). Subject to execution of a Development Agreement with the successful developer in mid-2020, construction will begin, with a proposed completion date of 2030.
Stage: Planning, Project duration: 2019- 2030, Type: Precinct, Architect: MGS, Developer: TBD.
Quest Dandenong Central is a $22 million development, and has been operating since 5 December 2016. It has 95 rooms, and is a 4.5 star serviced apartment building operated by Quest Apartments.
Stage: Complete, Project duration: 2014- 2016, Architect: RPC Architects, Developer: Pellicano Group.
The eight-storey Government Services Office (GSO) on the corner of Walker and Thomas streets is a landmark new sustainable office building for Dandenong. The GSO opened in April 2012 and is home to 900 workers from five government departments. The building has a 6-star Green Star rating, features retail space at ground level, and an open-air deck on level four.
Stage: Complete, Project duration: 2010- 2012, Type: Public, Architect: Hassell, Developer: Grocon.
- Located in the foothills of the Dandenong Ranges, Greater Dandenong was the territory of the Wurundjeri and Boonerwrung (or Bunurong) tribes of the Kulin Nation
- There are several theories as to what 'Dandenong' means: ‘Tanjenong’ means lofty mountains, possibly referring to the nearby Dandenong ranges; 'bad flour', or 'no good damper', a local tale about indigenous people obtaining a bag of lime and mistakenly using it to make damper; and a third version has the name Dandenong coming from 'a burning' and 'the past' reflecting bushfires in the Dandenongs
- The arrival of European settlers, severely disrupted Aboriginal living patterns, with a major decline in population from 1834 to 1850
- The loss of land, and the disappearance of traditional ways of life brought dramatic changes for local indigenous people
- Dandenong was a township by 1861, with 40 houses, housing 193 people
- Dandenong Market, which still operates today, commenced trading in 1866
- Dandenong Shire was proclaimed in 1873
- The Dandenong Town Hall on Lonsdale Street, was built in 1890 and acted as the Shire Hall, Courthouse and Mechanics Institute
- The post-war industrial boom brought an influx of European migrants to Dandenong, particularly from Italy and Greece
- In the 1950s Melbourne rapidly expanded to Dandenong, and it became a major metropolitan manufacturing and commercial area
- By the late 1960s, Dandenong was officially a suburban area of Melbourne, and central Dandenong began to transform with the redevelopment of the post office to a two-storey modern building in 1960, and Dandenong Railway Station in 1975
- In 1994, The City of Dandenong was abolished, and was merged with parts of the Cities of Berwick, Cranbourne and Springvale to form the newly created City of Greater Dandenong
- City of Greater Dandenong signed a statement of apology to the Aboriginal community to acknowledge them as first people of this land
- The Dandenong Livestock market closed in 1998
- Under the Melbourne 2030 policy, Dandenong was classified as a major activity centre due to its central location with regard to its access to transport
- In 2002 the State Government committed funding of $290 million for the Revitalising Central Dandenong (RCD) initiative
- In 2005, planning and construction commenced on the Metro 3175 project, named after Dandenong's postcode, redeveloping the former Dandenong Livestock Market into a mixed-use development consisting of housing, cafes and restaurants
- Due to the isolation of the site from the rest of the central Dandenong area, George Street was widened and extended with a bridge across the railway lines to improve access between the precincts
- Cheltenham Road, a major east-west arterial was realigned in order to remove traffic from nearby streets, and encourage pedestrian use
- The $26 million redevelopment of Dandenong Market commenced in 2005
- The RCD initiative was conceived in 2005 to restore the economic prominence of Dandenong and re-establish it as a capital of the south-east, in order to address the economic and socio-economic disadvantages prevalent in the region
Following a review of the Infrastructure Recovery Charge (IRC) and consultation with industry and other stakeholders, we are removing the charge on developments occurring on privately-owned land to attract increased private sector investment and stimulate jobs and economic growth.
This will provide a significant boost for Dandenong - the capital of Melbourne’s growing south-east corridor. From 25 February 2021, the IRC no longer applies to developments on privately-owned land within the Revitalising Central Dandenong (RCD) Declared Project Area.
Removing the IRC will provide further incentives to the private sector to invest in Dandenong and deliver community building residential and commercial developments. The IRC will continue to apply to developments on land owned or controlled by Development Victoria, the Victorian Government’s property developer.
The RCD project has been made possible through a $290 million investment from the Victorian Government.
The RCD initiative leverages private sector growth, and is enhancing Dandenong as a place to live, work and visit.
This injection of funds into Dandenong would not be possible without the recovery of a portion of the investment through the IRC, resulting in community benefits including improved amenity and infrastructure.
The IRC came into operation on 1 September 2006 and will remain in place until 31 December 2026, or the date upon which the Government’s investment in the RCD project has been recouped.
For more information please contact
8 Exhibition Street
Melbourne VIC 3000
Ph: 03 8317 3400
- Foster Street Redevelopment - December 2020 PDF, 601.5 kb
- RCD Infrastructure Recovery Charge PDF, 202.8 kb
- RCD Urban Master Plan Summary PDF, 2.3 mb
- Dandenong declared area map PDF, 8.3 mb
- Macroplan market report PDF, 2.8 mb
- Macroplan presentation (September 2019) PDF, 2.8 mb
- Macroplan presentation (October 2018) PDF, 4.0 mb
- RCD IRC Removal fact sheet (April 2021) PDF, 580.9 kb
Updated on 11 October 2021