True North at the site of the new Arden Station

March 2022–
Cross Yarra Partnership's Metro Tunnel Creative Program at Arden Station
Laurens Street
North Melbourne, Victoria

Curator & Writer: Christine Eid
Graphic Design: Heather Walker
Artist: Wanissa Somsuphangsri

Head down Laurens Street in North Melbourne and discover True North, an illustrated timeline that charts the evolution of North and West Melbourne in and around the construction site of the new Arden Station.

It is a story of dramatic transformation: the once-pristine Blue Lake, home to the local Kulin people for millennia, into a wasteland known as West Melbourne Swamp within 20 years of European settlement; the development of the railway, industry and public transport; and the demographic shift of the area into gentrified real estate.

This evolution continues with the new Arden Station, linking into the Metro Tunnel network of five new underground stations and due to open in 2025.

True North is a nod to Arden Station’s true location in North Melbourne, as the existing North Melbourne Station is actually in West Melbourne.

Commissioned by the Cross Yarra Partnership’s Metro Tunnel Creative Program, curator and writer Christine Eid worked closely with Peter Gerrand, Mary Kehoe and Lorraine Siska from the North and West Melbourne Association and Hotham History Project to bring the stories to life and manage the project.

With a bold, visually striking design by Heather Walker and Wanissa Somsuphangsri’s magnificent artistic interpretation of the Blue Lake, True North has come together from the efforts of a truly wonderful, creative and insightful team.

True North is a collaboration between Metro Tunnel Creative Program, North and West Melbourne Association and Hotham History Project.


Photographer: James Henry