Testing Grounds

Architect: Millie Cattlin, 2016

City of Melbourne | C54

Building Description

Testing Grounds is a free outdoor space for creative practices encompassing art, performance and design, available for creative, cultural, and education-related activities. Curated through an open application process that supports interdisciplinary practice, experimentation, and courage, it is a place where people at all levels can test, develop, and share their work. A six-square-metre steel grid forms a superstructure and a framework across the site for shelter, public art installations and for distributing power, lighting, data, and water. Initially designed as a low-cost and efficient response to the site, it has the capacity to enable a diversity of uses. Four indoor spaces attached to shipping containers provide residency spaces, galleries, theatres and stages, and there is a licensed bar as well. In 1925, the YMCA opened its headquarters on this site but in 1983 structural damage caused by construction of the Arts Centre and Hamer Hall meant that the building needed to be demolished. The land was acquired by the State of Victoria as Crown Land and is reserved for arts purposes. Testing Grounds is a temporary infrastructure project providing an alternative place for art in the arts precinct while the future of the site begins its next stages.

What's On

Self-guided tour where you can explore the site, studios and spaces.


1-23 City Road, Southbank 3006, Southbank VIC

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