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Arts infrastructure in the City of Melbourne helps shape the city’s identity, supports its economy and fosters community wellbeing. It does this by supporting a diverse range of creative practitioners through the provision of spaces and opportunities needed to create work, reach audiences and markets, and maximise the community’s participation in the arts.

The purpose of the City of Melbourne Arts Infrastructure Framework (MAIF) is to provide strategic direction on the delivery of arts infrastructure by the City of Melbourne and its external partners.

The MAIF is a high-level document that will drive change across the City of Melbourne. In the short term it will assist the coordination and delivery of the essentials of the city’s Arts Strategy 2014–17 and Council Plan 2013–17 Creative City priorities; underpin the 10-year capital works plan for Arts Melbourne; and provide a foundation for future Council planning in relation to arts infrastructure. It is a strategic document designed to support the City of Melbourne’s advocacy with external stakeholders including the Federal and State governments and the private sector where infrastructure driven by these stakeholders impacts Council’s responsibilities. A detailed implementation plan will be developed in 2016–17 (Annual Plan Action 2.1.1).

The research and consultation undertaken in developing the MAIF has identified five key goals for Melbourne’s arts infrastructure in the next five years.

1. To secure commitment for the delivery of three arts hubs that include mid-sized performance spaces and community arts spaces.

2. To significantly increase the number of creative spaces within the municipality.

3. Advocate to create and incorporate live/work spaces within the city.

4. Advocate to support the provision of more affordable housing for artists, as per the city’s housing strategy.

5. To ensure the integration of embedded public art projects in new public and private developments.

The MAIF’s scope, identified from City of Melbourne’s Council Plan, the Arts Strategy 2014–17 and community consultation, focuses on arts infrastructure that is accessible for community members to encourage and support participation, and that which addresses the needs of new and emerging artists, creative practitioners and organisations.

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