Published on 06 September 2022

Bentleigh Urban Living Room

The Bentleigh Urban Living Room is a temporary, multipurpose community open space designed to bring fun and life to the Bentleigh community.

What is it?

The Bentleigh Urban Living Room is installed in the Godfrey Street car park, it includes picnic tables and pod-style seating for enjoying takeaway food, coffee and picnics. Local artist Cal Gillespie has been commissioned to enhance the fully accessible space with vibrant road art.

The overall theme is a ‘living’ spacethat is fully accessible and encourages the community to linger longer within the Bentleigh activity centre, enjoying all that the local traders have on offer.

There are limited opportunities to create more large, open spaces in Glen Eira, and Council needs to trial new and smaller open spaces, sometimes in unique locations to provide alternatives that will reduce pressure on the larger spaces as our population continues to grow.

Providing more of these smaller open spaces so that the community can easily walk to and enjoy the benefits of open space is a key part of our Open Space Strategy Refresh. 

How long will the space be there?

The installation is a temporary trial for a period of nine months.

How has it been funded?

The installation is part of a funded program by the Victorian State Government to provide more semi-permanent and permanent open spaces as part of the ongoing economic recovery strategy from COVID-19.

This unique form of open space is a drawcard for the Bentleigh community and traders, as local businesses will have greater exposure to customers as they take time to relax and unwind in a fully accessible, well-lit and versatile space. Takeaway food, coffee or BYO picnics can also be enjoyed in the space, and it provides plenty of opportunity for pop-up events which is a great point of difference.

Why has it been installed in a car park?

The location was identified and discussed with the Bentleigh Traders Association as being the most ‘fit for purpose’ for a temporary installation. It can be utilised by local traders through the Bentleigh Traders Association and the community to run events and activities and provide an alternate space while the Eat Street project is being constructed.  

There are currently 497 car parks in the Bentleigh activity centre, including seniors and disabled parking near the Godfrey Street shop entrances. This location was chosen to have the least impact on car parking in the area.

Why open the space in winter?

Installation occurred at this time of year to meet the funding conditions and deadline of June 30 as set down by the Victorian Government. However, it will continue through the Spring and Summer where more people will have the opportunity to enjoy the space.

Who can book the space?

The space will be used to hold, like the ‘Lighting up the Past’ event in September. 

Members of the Bentleigh Traders Association and not-for-profit community groups can also book the space to run pop-up events.

For more information and bookings, please call Council’s Customer Service Centre on 03 9524 3333.

Bentleigh Urban Living Space
Bentleigh Urban Living Space

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