The University is transforming the former Royal Women’s Hospital site into a globally recognised innovation precinct – working in partnership with the State Government of Victoria, the City of Melbourne and the private sector.

Innovation precincts are environments where people from different disciplines and different organisations work closely together in a creative and entrepreneurial way. The precinct will tackle major societal challenges, such as food security, changing technologies and urbanisation.

The innovation precinct builds on the achievements of LAB-14, the highly successful prototype which operated for two-and-a-half years (2015 - 2017). It will provide a home for technology focused organisations, cutting edge research and next-generation startups that will significantly benefit the Australian economy and society.

In addition, the precinct will include retail, indoor and outdoor public spaces, student accommodation, offices and a childcare centre. Science Gallery Melbourne will also be a signature destination, inviting young learners to creatively explore the collisions between art and science.


Keep informed of construction works, and changes to the Innovation Precinct below.


In November 2017, the University of Melbourne announced a partnership with a consortium led by Lendlease to develop the precinct. Early works on the site started in November 2017 and hoardings were installed around the perimeter of the building site.

Construction is expected to start in mid-2018 for completion in 2020.

APRIL 2018 Update

To enable the installation of conduits in the footpath on Swanston Street, there will be a temporary footpath closure between the Royal Dental Hospital of Melbourne entry and Grattan Street. Works are planned on May 2, 3 and 4, and during these times pedestrians will be diverted to an alternate pathway.

May 2018 Update

Demolition works continue with slab and structural demolition and installation of scaffolding to the Swanston Street gantry. We will be installing footings for a temporary power kiosk along Swanston Street (kiosk to be installed at a later date).

We’ll commence demolition to the roof of LAB14 building and commence construction of new site sheds on the ground floor of the Old Royal Women’s Hospital carpark in Cardigan Street.

For users of the Royal Women’s Hospital Car Park, please be advised that from Monday 7th May onwards the after-hours door (via Cardigan St) will not be accessible for public use until further notice. The door will be repurposed for use as part of the site works. Car spaces along the North wall and the North-West corner will be occupied for site sheds for an extended period, as per the plan attached.

We apologise in advance for any disruption or inconvenience these works may cause.


Slab and structural demolition works will continue this month, which may incur additional noise, vibration and dust.

Citipower will be placing a temporary power kiosk along Swanston Street, with civil works and activation to be conducted from 18th June to 20th June. During these times, Citipower will provide localised traffic management and divert pedestrians around the footpath closure as required (see attached plan below for pedestrian diversions).

Subcontractor site sheds have relocated to the ground floor of the Old Royal Women’s Hospital carpark in Cardigan Street.

To enable the installation of temporary crossovers along Grattan St (near Swanston St) and Cardigan St (near Grattan St) between 13th June and 16th June, there will be a footpath closure between Swanston St and Cardigan St and a partial closure of Cardigan St footpath near Grattan St.

Pending a City of Melbourne permit there may be the installation of a temporary crossover along Cardigan St (near Grattan St) in mid-June.





Our Campus in the 21st century (OC21) was developed by the University community in a series of workshops that explored the qualities wanted across all campuses and precincts. It is the formal response to the University of Melbourne’s strategic plan Growing Esteem and is integral to how the University will plan for the future, and to developing high-quality campus-based experiences for diverse communities.

The Carlton Connect Initiative will support our campus in the 21st century through the following:


The general public will be invited to a vast program of public events, including festivals, talks and exhibitions at the precinct. Over the last two-and-a-half years, LAB-14 – which has served as the highly successfully prototype of the precinct – hosted hundreds of events, seminars, hackathons, exhibitions and meetings, bringing over 40,000 visitors to the precinct.

Science Gallery Melbourne will be a signature destination within the precinct, inviting young learners into the Australian node of Science Gallery International Network.


The Royal Women’s Hospital site has a strong social heritage and a narrative of pioneering medical procedures and care provided by women and health professionals. This history will continue to inspire future leaders.

Over the next few years, the University of Melbourne will be transforming the development of the Royal Women’s hospital site into a light filled, vibrant innovation precinct to meet the highest standards in design and sustainability – one of a kind in Australia.