What's An Integrated Entertainment Space?

Outdoor barbecues. Market stalls. Local gigs. How can there be a location that hosts all of these different forms of entertainment leisure? As land is becoming scarce in our metropolitan cities and suburbs, the urban landscape is changing. Architects are approaching town planning with an alternative perspective – to make adaptable spaces.

Back when land was abundant, areas were developed and built to serve their one purpose. If it was an apartment building, then that’s all it was. If it was a courtyard, then it probably had a few seating areas and maybe a shrub. Now, this is no longer viable solution. So, thank the architects, urban planners and landscapers of the world for their idea to design multi-functional and multi-purpose spaces that aren’t just fancy names for school assembly halls.

You might be thinking – how is this different to any other park? Well, it boils down to two things: Design and location. Bring in the Integrated Entertainment Space (IES). These outdoor inventions are taking suburbs by storm. Picture a contemporary open outdoor space, lined with strategic ergonomic seating and recreational facilities. Now imagine the ability for this space to transform into navigable Sunday morning market filled with local produce and goods. Or a neat cluster of food trucks serving delicious foods. Or a charitable mini festival with local musicians and bands performing.

For example, the beachside suburb of Mentone is receiving one of these new outdoor spaces. Their train station will be undergoing an update, courtesy of Public Transport Victoria and the Victorian Government, and will subsequently be receiving an IES alongside the station. At the best of times, train stations are bustling with commuters. Mentone Station is no exception, with one of the highest concentrations of schools within a suburb, ushering a constant flow of students through the Myki readers. Not to mention the amount of small-medium businesses that exist in Mentone. Having an IES close to a busy area encourages communal engagement with the space. The dream for Mentone is that their IES becomes a community hub that can adapt to the community’s interests and needs accordingly, guided by local input.

Integrated Entertainment Spaces are more than just outdoor spaces. They are responsible for fostering a sense of community and encouraging local conviviality. Will your suburb be next?

Mentone Traders' Association