Throughout 2018, Ballarat’s residents and creatives discussed their aspirations for Ballarat’s Creative City Strategy and how it will contribute to a Ballarat that is proud, bold and thriving. As a result, the draft Ballarat’s Creative City Strategy and Creative Precinct Master Plan were released for public consultation on 28 November 2018. The drafts brought the input and feedback received during the two consultation phases in 2018 together into a long-term strategy to be owned by all.

The public consultation on the drafts resulted in the following response:

  • 37 formal submissions
  • A rich amount of feedback using a variety of creative mediums as a result of a public consultation public event held on 11 December, attended by over 150 community members
  • A creative-led response: Two local artists pasted the draft strategy up in Police Lane and held readings and performances to encourage responses – this resulted in ‘graffiti’ responses to the drafts, on the paste-up.

All of this consultation feedback was extrapolated into 305 individual issues, which were distilled into 32 themes. The report which has been produced discusses each of those 32 themes, with City of Ballarat’s response to them, and an indication of whether they resulted in a change to the versions of strategy or master plan being presented to Council for adoption on 15 May 2019.

The majority of feedback received during the consultation related to specific suggestions and ideas for implementation of the strategy and master plan, and as such will be further reviewed throughout the process of formulating specific action plans for delivery.

The key changes made to the documents as a result of the feedback received was the inclusion of a new section in the strategy explaining the concept of Ballarat being a ‘city powered by STEAM’ in a different way, ie instead using the analogy of the ‘creative spark’. It also explains how implementation will be built around the layered concepts of ‘maintain, extend, attract and retain, broker and monitor’. This concept will provide the basis for the next stage of implementation plans by the City of Ballarat.

The final reports were adopted by Ballarat City Council at their 15 May Council Meeting.