Following feedback from traders and customers, the City of Melbourne has revised the plans for the proposed redevelopment of the heritage Queen Victoria Market. According to the revision, the two-storey temporary Market Garden pavilion designed by Breathe Architecture will be reduced in size to minimise business disruption during the market renewal project.

The size of the pavilion, which has been designed to temporarily house traders during the five-year redevelopment of the market, will be reduced to half following amendments approved by the Council to revise the footprint of the below-ground operational area underneath the existing market sheds. The smaller but deeper footprint for the below-ground facilities allows the size of the pavilion to be reduced from 254 metres to 111 metres in length, with the revised width fixed at 17.7 metres, down from the originally planned 19 metres.

Traders can continue to operate during the market renewal program in the fully equipped pavilion while restoration works are carried out on the market’s heritage sheds along with construction of the new below-ground facilities. The redevelopment project is expected to ensure the future viability of the market through greater efficiency, cost-savings and safety, and increased opportunities for businesses.

Designed by Grimshaw Architects, the $250 million market renewal project includes the construction of new underground facilities over three levels and a mezzanine, all designed to provide back-of-house facilities for traders as well as space for car parking. The heritage sheds above the area will be disassembled, repaired and rebuilt. The original designs were planned around shallower excavation over a wider area, which would have forced more traders out of the sheds. The amended plans will limit shed removal and minimise disruption to traders during the renewal.

Despite these changes, the overall integrity of the heritage architecture has been retained, according to the City of Melbourne, with the QVM to remain a fresh produce, open air market.