The Old and the New

Melbourne

Completed in 1888, Coop’s Shot Tower was incorporated into Melbourne Central, a shopping complex, in 1991.

One thing I love about Melbourne is the blend of its old historical buildings and its contemporary ones.

Melbourne was founded in 1835, more than 250 years after the first Spanish mission was constructed in Miami. You don’t see many old buildings in Miami. There are some notable exceptions particularly in Downtown Miami and Miami Beach’s beautiful Art Deco district, but most of these buildings only go back to the 1920s.  In contrast, Melbourne’s old homes and buildings are pretty much everywhere. Glorious historic buildings such as Flinders Street Station (1854) and the Royal Exhibition Building (1880) sit alongside modern structures like Federation Square (2002) and the Melbourne Museum (2001) respectively. This was a quality I loved about London when I visited there in 2006. I suppose the same can be said of much of Europe.

Melbourne

The Young and Jackson Hotel was established in 1861. St. Paul’s Cathedral was consecrated in 1891.

Melbourne

Federation Square was created in 2002. It sits across from the historic Young and Jackson Hotel, St. Paul’s Cathedral, and Flinders Street Station.

Melbourne

Melbourne CBD is full of alleys. Some are lined with shops and cafes, some with street art. Notice the beautiful bluestone path.

There are some American cities that have preserved its historic sites better than Miami. New York City comes to mind as do parts of the South and New England. Miami has such an influx of people and there’s not much room left to expand the city. So, it grows upwards. Beautiful old sites are destroyed to make room for sporting venues and tall condominiums particularly along the Miami River and bay, which happen to be the oldest parts of the city. A long history of hurricane destruction has made it easier.

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