By design / by Mario Mirabile

Fuelled by a series of gold rushes in the second half of the 19th century, Melbourne became one of the richest cities in the world. The architecture of the day reflected the money pouring into the town, with ornate and classically inspired buildings springing up to house both the wealthy residents and the booming commercial interests of the day. Many of these buildings survive, although often as little more than a facade sprouting a modern skyscraper. However, many more were torn down and replaced by monstrosities during the urban renewal craze of the 1960s. The monstrosities are now, in their turn, coming down and being replaced by bigger and more efficient structures, better suited to the expectations of modern tenants. Occasionally (and thankfully....), there also appears to be a degree of flair being applied to their design.