Victorian Pride Centre
A hub for everything LGBTIQ with a Vision to be the most loved, well known and visited home for the LGBTIQ community in Australia.
The Victorian Pride Centre is a unique initiative that celebrates, bolsters and protects equality, diversity and inclusion. It is set to forge a new chapter in the narrative of Australian Pride by bringing the LGBTI community together in a single and powerful space.
The centre will be a permanent home for organisations that provide advisory , health, and support services. The centre will also function as a community space and a safe social environment for the LGBTQI community.
Organisations include JOY FM, the Victorian Aids Council, LGBTQI Multi Culture, Multi Faith and Team Melbourne , the Australian Lesbian and Gay Archives, Switchboard, Melbourne Queer Film Festival and Minus 18.
The Victorian Pride Centre will be a unique space in Australia: a hub for LGBTI groups and organisations, showcasing our culture and history, bringing together health and support services and providing safe community spaces to celebrate who we are.
The Victorian Pride Centre's Values are:
- Honouring our LGBTI history and culture, creating our future
- Catalysing our community
- Celebrating and valuing our difference
- Respecting and supporting each other
- Living with courage, pride and strength
- Demonstrating leadership for the LGBTI community
You belong here!
The article by Jane Gilmore is from the January 28, 2018 issue of The Age Digital Edition. It talks about the building itself as well as it's landlords.
A winner takes pride of place
An '' exuberant"architectural design has won the competition for the $38 million Victorian Pride Centre in St Kilda.
The winning design for the 5500-square metre Fitzroy Street space, which will be a hub for the LGBTQI community and support groups, will be announced by the state government today.
The building, which features a series of curves and rainbow motifs, is modern but incorporates a touch of St Kilda's art deco heritage.
Dimity Reed, chair of the design competition jury, says the Pride Centre will be a community centre not an office building and is delighted the winning design reflects that.
'' It's a very exciting design and it will be an exciting place. Historic groups will already be there, new groups will start there and a lot of wonderful new things will emerge from that blend.''
Jude Munro, who chairs the Pride Centre board, was also delighted with the results of the competition.
'' I can't tell you the level of excitement we have about these designs. They took our breath away.''
The design was created by two St Kilda-based firms , Grant Amon Architects and Brearley Architects and Urbanists.
Munro says it is fortuitous but not intentional that the competition has been won by local businesses.
'' My sense is that they have a deep understanding of Fitzroy Street and St Kilda and that came through in the winning design.''
Reed says that while the design is modern and exuberant, it also includes nods to the 1930s-style Moroccan motif incorporated into other iconic buildings along the St Kilda foreshore, such as Luna Park, the Palais Theatre and the St Kilda Sea Baths. '' The design considered the area the building will be situated [in] and the role we all hope this building will play in Fitzroy Street, which is one of those beautiful boulevards leading to the sea. We think of this as a major component of the rehabilitation of the street.''
The Pride Centre concept is based on similar hubs in San Francisco and New York. Unlike the San Francisco Pride Centre, the Melbourne hub will not suffer the insecurity of temporary accommodation. The site and building will be owned by an independent company on behalf of the LGBTQI community. All the board members of the company are members of the community.
The centre will be a third bigger than the San Francisco centre and will be a permanent home for at least 10 organisations that provide advisory , health, and support services. The centre will also function as a community space and a safe social environment for the sometimes vulnerable LGBTQI community.
Organisations likely to move into the centre include JOY FM, the Victorian Aids Council, LGBTQI Multi Culture, Multi Faith and Team Melbourne , the Australian Lesbian and Gay Archives, Switchboard, Melbourne Queer Film Festival and Minus 18.
Given that JOY FM alone has more than 300 volunteers, the Pride Centre board says the hub will definitely increase the number of people coming to the area.
St Kilda residents, who have proven vehement in their opposition to proposed developments like the St Kilda triangle, responded positively to designs submitted to the jury. Close to 150 local residents attended an information meeting run by the Pride Centre board last November.
Munro said they were concerned about Fitzroy Street '' being a bit run down"and expressed hope that the Pride Centre, along with other developments like The George refurbishment , would bring life and colour back to the area.
The Pride Centre will be built on the site once occupied by Monroe's restaurant, a venue that had longterm ties with the queer community.
Monroe's was the site of the first meeting of the Seahorse Group, Australia's first transgender support and social group. As far back as the 1970s the owners of Monroe's welcomed the group and gave them a space to meet and share meals. They also helped them come in through the off-street entrance when they felt unsafe, as they did all too frequently .
Victoria's Minister for Equality, Martin Foley, will unveil the winning design at today's Midsumma Pride March. He says the centre will be '' a space for the community and LGBTQI organisations to share ideas, collaborate and celebrate our diversity'' . Mr Foley also announced the Victorian government has committed $600,000 over three years to secure the future of the Midsumma Festival.
Midsumma started in the late 1980s as a week-long celebration of gay pride. Nearly three decades later Midsumma has expanded to a threeweek festival featuring nearly 170 events at over 100 different venues. More than 200,000 people are expected to attend this year.
Fitzroy Street is the main route for the annual Midsumma Pride March. Jude Munro says it will be an extraordinary feeling for the community to march past the Pride Centre knowing the building is theirs, it can't be taken away and will always provide a safe space for anyone who identifies as part of the LGBTQI community.
'' We will have security, we want the centre to be a safe place, but it also has to be open and supportive.'' Munro hopes security guards will be members of the LGBTQI community but at the very least they must be '' warm and welcoming to anyone who comes to participate in activities at the centre'' .
Reed agrees and says the design of the building will encourage a feeling of safety. '' It's open, encouraging, rewarding and there's a sense that you walk in and you're home. We want it to be iconic but most importantly it must be welcoming. This centre is going to be a sanctuary.
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❊ Address & Contact ❊
⊜ 79 - 81 Fitzroy St, St Kilda | Map
❊ Web Links ❊
→ Victorian Pride Centre
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