It’s encouraging to hear community groups have been offered subsidised accomodation by Melbourne City Council. Not-for-profit organisations can gain a lot from having offices in the central business district, in much the same way that for-profit companies can gain. (PTUA makes use of a similar scheme via the Ross House Association.)
Melbourne’s CBD in gaining in popularity, with Southbank and Docklands also increasing in population. There’s the mix of easy accessibility, good environment and a critical mass of people and organisations. This last point is sometimes forgotten, but it makes it much easier to do business when just about everybody you need to talk to is a short walk or tram ride away. I reckon this is something that helps cities (and in particular city centres) be successful.
For example, here are the major players (well, those I could think of at the time) in public transport. Click on the flags to see who they are.
They’re all in or near the CBD, with the exception of VicRoads, whose relevant offices are in Kew and Ascot Vale.
Phone calls and email can do a lot of the job, but face-to-face meetings help re-inforce relationships, and are better for some types of discussion. Being in close proximity makes this much easier.
So getting more not-for-profit groups into the CBD not only increases the vibrancy and diversity of the city, it hopefully also helps those groups a lot in their efforts to achieve their goals.