Melbourne Cool Lines!
Connecting existing fragmented green spaces into cooling networks of green-blue urban infrastructure.
Melbourne cool lines proposes a blueprint vision on how cities can be cooled and greened progressively. It is not based on radical change, but shows how strategies can be implemented progressively to realise an overall vision of networked urban ecologies.Dr Maud Cassaignau
Melbourne Cool Lines! was a research collaboration with the Cooperative Research Centre for Water Sensitive Cities and the City of Melbourne.
The project explored how to address climate change and the urban heat island effect by retrofitting the city with architecture, landscape and infrastructural measures, and culminated in an exhibition at Melbourne City Library Gallery 12–22 March 2020, during Melbourne Design Week. The project was also presented at the CITYX Venice Italian Virtual Pavilion, part of the 17th International Architecture exhibition, 22 May to 21 November 2021.
Via urban scale visionary drawings, a walkable city map with physical models of proposed interventions, 3D virtual reality models, videos of animated drone flights, and documentations of local and international precedents, Melbourne Cool Lines! invited visitors on a ‘cool line’ journey through a walkable, urban landscape.
In the exhibition, visitors were presented future scenarios for north-west Melbourne through a network of green-blue infrastructures. These infrastructures contributed to an improved urban climate, and a network of ‘cooling devices’ facilitated continuous and protected pedestrian circulation through the public realm. The project integrated multi-scalar propositions of landscape-design, architecture and urbanism into new urban ecologies within the extant built fabric. Design interventions occupied and connected existing fragmented, green space.
Melbourne Cool Lines! demonstrated how architecture, urban and landscape approaches can reconnect vegetal, water and human systems while enhancing accessibility, open spaces, water and air quality, health and well-being.
- “Cool cities” on ABC Radio National Blueprint, 20 February 2021: a conversation with Dr Maud Cassaignau and Markus Jung, and presenter Jonathan Green