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Federation Square

Federation Square is the name of Melbourne's new civic centre capable of accommodating 15,000 people in an open-air amphitheatre. The Square is a major feature of the Melbourne skyline, having been built to serve as a central focal point for the city but also to block out the ugliness of railway lines that run through the very heart of the city. It is situated opposite Flinders Street Station on a 3.6 hectare block built above the Jolimont railway lines. In order for the Square to be developed, the entirety of the Flinders Street railway yards had to be covered with deck comprising 3000 tonnes of steel beams, 1.4 kilometres of concrete "crash walls" and more than 4000 vibration-absorbing spring coils and rubber pads.

More important, Federation Square serves as a connecting point between the CBD and the rapidly growing Southgate precinct and St Kilda Road boulevard.

The Square is controversial due to its striking, but unusual, design using large panels and claddings of sandstone, zinc and glass. It is a strikingly modern design for a civic centre and has not found favour with everyone. The design is that of London-based Lab architecture studio, who won the rights for the project after an international design competition was held in 1977.

Website: http://www.fedsquare.com.au/

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