Healthy Spaces & Places Healthy Spaces & Places

Case Studies

Bendigo City Centre, Victoria

Town/Region | Bendigo
State | VIC
Context | Regional Centre
Target Group | All
Timing | Current
Weblink | Click here to view the website.
Key Principles
  • People engaging in regular physical activity
  • Sense of belonging
  • Sense of place


The City of Greater Bendigo is one of Victoria’s largest regional municipalities with a population of over 94,000. Bendigo has recognised the vital role a strong city heart plays in the identity, prosperity, sustainability and cohesion of an urban community and its hinterland. 

In 2005, the award-winning Bendigo Central Business District (CBD) Plan articulated a widely shared vision for further enhancing the city centre.  This celebrates a rich inheritance of grand Victorian buildings and streets, and builds on the demonstrated benefits flowing from incremental public realm enhancements undertaken since the early 1990s.

The delivery program (Bendigo City Centre Program) elevates the vision and the best interest of ‘the place’ above sectional perspectives to build synergies and achieve more effective, speedier implementation of initiatives.

Key Features

  • Creating a pedestrian-friendly centre - Bendigo’s CBD Plan includes a suite of initiatives that combine to enhance the quality of pedestrian experience and use of streets and spaces within the city centre. 
  • Creation of several new public spaces and nodes, including Pall Mall Promenade - a broad walkway linking Bendigo’s fine public buildings and monuments along its grand central boulevard.
  • Public realm improvements including underground installation of electricity wires, street tree planting and consistent footpaths.
  • Walk Bendigo program aimed at converting shopping streets to a ‘shared space’ regime - effectively pedestrian spaces into which cars are allowed as subsidiary users, using design psychology to achieve low speed and negotiated sharing of space.  Two sections of street are operational and others are programmed.


  • Taking a holistic approach to enhance all aspects of the city centre, helps to successfully deliver an environment supportive of healthier ways of using the city. 
  • An attractive city that supports growth of business and creativity whilst stimulating a strong sense of identity and inclusion will also be a healthy city.
  • Incremental improvements to the public realm can over time create a more attractive environment for pedestrians, cyclists and all people using the public space.
  • Working with owners of existing shopping centres on the retail fringe to incorporate pedestrian links and active frontages into upgrade works has been important to connect it with the traditional retail core and railway station.


Last updated on 21st February, 2014

Sponsors This project was funded by the Australian Government Department of Health and Ageing.