Camberwell, Victoria

Camberwell, Victoria

Infobox Australian Place
name = Camberwell



caption = Camberwell Town Hall
state = vic
type = suburb
lga = City of Boroondara
area = 5.8
city = Melbourne
est =
postcode = 3124
pop = 19,637 (2006)Census 2006 AUS | id = SSC21135 | name = Camberwell (State Suburb) | accessdate = 2007-09-26 | quick = on]
propval = $1,400,000 [ [http://www.domain.com.au/public/suburbprofile.aspx?mode=buy&searchterm=3124 domain.com.au: Camberwell] ]
stategov = Hawthorn, Burwood
fedgov = Kooyong, Higgins
near-nw = Hawthorn East
near-n = Canterbury
near-ne = Surrey Hills
near-w = Hawthorn East
near-e = Burwood
near-sw = Glen Iris
near-s = Glen Iris
near-se = Burwood
dist1 = 13 | location1 = Melbourne

Camberwell is a suburb of Melbourne, Australia, in the local municipality of the City of Boroondara. Camberwell is designated one of 26 Principal Activity Centres in the Melbourne 2030 Metropolitan Strategy.

A feature sight of Camberwell is the Burke Road shopping strip, which stretches north approximately 600 m from Camberwell Junction, where three tram routes converge - the 70, 72, and 75. Half-way up the shopping strip is Camberwell railway station, which services the Belgrave, Lilydale, and Alamein train lines. East Camberwell, Riversdale, Willison, and Hartwell stations also lie within the suburb's boundaries. Several bus routes also cover the area.

The historic Rivoli Cinemas sit just west of Camberwell Junction in the adjacent suburb of Hawthorn East

History

Camberwell received its name as a result of an early settler being reminded of the way three roads intersected in the south London district of Camberwell. The development that followed was a product of the expansion of Melbourne's suburban rail network in the 1880s. The Prospect Hill area is adjacent to the railway station and is the oldest part of the suburb. The original subdivision was relatively generous blocks which were quickly filled with fine Victorian and Edwardian houses. Due to its hilly topography, many east-west streets in the Prospect Hill area have an excellent view of Melbourne's central business district. Its main commercial centre developed along Burke Road from its railway station to Camberwell Junction, some 500m to the south. Several tram routes converge on this point. Though Burke Road is the boundary with Hawthorn East, this precinct is effectively the 'centre' of Camberwell.

Though the area was originally agricultural, Camberwell is now one of the most well-established of Melbourne's 'middle-ring' suburbs. It is part of the City of Boroondara, the local government area with the lowest socio-economic disadvantage index in Australia. There is almost no industrial land in Camberwell, and commercial uses are concentrated near the Burke Road precinct, which has long been one of the busiest in suburban Melbourne. House prices in Boroondara are well-above the metropolitan median and those in the Prospect Hill precinct are several times the Boroondara median.

Development Controversies

The multimodal accessibility of the Burke Road precinct, and the desirability of the suburb as a place to live has meant that development pressures have long existed in Camberwell. At the same time, the area has a long history of resident action in the face of perceived threats its identity and way of life. For example, In the 1970s a plan to re-develop a large section of the Burke Road shopping strip and its hinterland into a mall and commercial complex was fiercely fought and won. The site is well-known for its market, held every weekend on a large parking area behind the shopping strip. Though the carpark has been upgraded, the market is still a feature and continues to attract a diverse base of traders and customers from around Melbourne.

More recently, a furore erupted amongst locals over plans to develop the 'air rights' over the Camberwell railway station. This local dispute gained air-time on national television, radio and in the broadsheet press, and was very publicly supported by Geoffrey Rush and Barry Humphries. Camberwell station lies in a cutting that carves its way through the side of Prospect Hill. There is a large marshalling yard adjacent to the station and a carpark, which form a significant break in the Burke Road streetscape. Local planners had for many years been aware of the potential for improving the local urban environment and a structure plan from 1988 incorporated the idea of developing over the station. The logic of 'transit-oriented development' (TOD) is essentially the same as that which had driven the Burke Road precinct oirginally, and the same principle of intensifying land uses around public transport nodes was claimed to be what drove the plans for Camberwell station.

Arguably, the process and the proposal were very poorly handled, and the local community were up in arms. The concept design showed little regard for TOD principles, incorporating several levels of car-parking for the employees of the offices above, and no residential component. To many locals, the design denigrated the heritage-listed station building. Geoffrey Rush (a user of the station) led the community in an attempt to stop the development, while Barry Humphries shared the stage at a rally against the project on one of his visits from London. The comedian performed a poem about planners at the rally which, in typical Humphries style contained elements of satire that appeared to be about local prejudices as much as the planning profession. A decision as to the fate of the station has not yet been made public.

A recent release of plans to develop the old bank adjacent to Sofia's Pizza House into a seven floor high building resulted in the Boroondara Residents'Action Group (BRAG) and the Council taking it to VCAT. The decision resulted in the development being cut back to five floors and the higher levels had to be set back further.

Other developments in the area which anger the local residents are a fifteen story development proposed right at the junction on the old "Henly Honda" site. Another development fought and over-ruled in VCAT is the Burke Avenue site which is being developed as a 7-storey complex with a Coles Supermarket on the ground floor.

Notable residents

*Adam Plack, didgeridoo player
*Geoffrey Rush, Australian actor
*Barry Humphries, Comedian (aka Edna Everage) grew up in Camberwell.
*Flea (musician), Bassist from Red Hot Chili Peppers
*Peter Costello, Treasurer (Higgins representative)

Australian singers Kylie Minogue and Dannii Minogue were raised in nearby Burwood and attended Camberwell High School, and it is now also the home of actor Geoffrey Rush. The Australian comedian and gladioli-tossing Barry Humphries (best known as the man behind Dame Edna) also spent his childhood years in the leafy Golf Links Estate at 36 Christowel Street.

Culture

Camberwell Market is a weekly event held to support Rotary that allows residents and non-residents to sell used clothes, books, furniture, crafts etc to crowds wandering the markets each Sunday. The market has a colourful atmosphere and attracts crowds from afar who enjoy wondering the morning market and the occasional cinnamon donut in the carpark. Between 1926 and 1990, Camberwell was represented in the Victorian Football Association by the Camberwell Football Club

See also

* City of Camberwell - the former local government area of the same name.

References

External links

* [http://web.archive.org/web/20040405101706/www.arts.monash.edu.au/ncas/multimedia/gazetteer/list/camberwell.html Australian Places - Camberwell]
* [http://brag.asn.au/bragmoodle10/course/view.php?id=2 Boroondara Residents' Action Group - BRAG]


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