The West of Melbourne Economic Development Alliance (WoMEDA) was established with an independent board and the support of Victoria University in 2017.

The primary objective is to influence new economic development opportunities and create more local jobs in the West of Melbourne.

WoMEDA is focussed on the area covered by the six Councils that work together through LeadWest (the regional organisation for the west): Brimbank, Hobsons Bay, Maribyrnong, Melton, Moonee Valley, and Wyndham.


Since its establishment, WoMEDA has launched a number of landmark reports.

  • In 2017, WoMEDA launched The Economic Development Strategy for the West of Melbourne, with the focus explicitly on strengthening employment in the west. The strategy sets out WoMEDA’s views as to how and where to strengthen jobs growth in the region. In order to encourage the development of local jobs, we have focussed on three major employment hubs - Footscray, Werribee and Sunshine. For each we have crafted specific plans. There are also over-arching issues of catch-up, which need to be addressed. Clearly the west is much more than those three hubs, however building these three strong local hubs of employment will generate widespread benefits for the region.
  • In 2017, WoMEDA also released Investing in a Health Cluster in Footscray.  The Centre of Policy Studies undertook an analysis of one of WoMEDA’s proposals for the Footscray employment hub - to co-locate the proposed new Footscray Hospital with Victoria University at Footscray Park, to create a unique health, sport and active living precinct.
  • In 2019, WoMEDA expanded on Sunshine, and released Sunshine: Daring to be Great - Economic Development and Jobs Strategy for the Sunshine Gateway Precinct. The report details how economic growth and job development should be supercharged off the back of the significant State Government investment heading into the region over the next two decades.
  • In 2020, WoMEDA released Investing in a New Hospital for Melton, which outlines the importance of a new Melton Hospital to the local economy and explains how the hospital will create jobs for the region, as well as a preferred site analysis.

North & West City Deal

The Federal and State Governments committed to developing a North West Melbourne City Deal in 2019 and asked local communities to develop a plan for what it might look like.

In an unprecedented collaboration, WoMEDA, along with NORTH Link, the 13 local Councils represented by LeadWest and the Northern Councils Alliance, La Trobe and Victoria Universities, joined forces to develop shared priorities for the North and West Melbourne region.

It focuses on the eight priority precincts in the region that have been designated by the Victorian Government as:

  • priority precincts
  • national employment and innovation clusters
  • metropolitan activity centres.

This plan lays the ground work for 66 transformative and enabling projects as the blueprint for the region, and is the key to significant investment and job creation.

The next step in progressing the deal is to seek formal Memorandum of Understanding arrangements at a Commonwealth, State and local government level.

The WoMEDA Board

Chaired by former Victorian Premier Steve Bracks, the Board includes representatives from Victoria University, local government and business.

Current Board Members (as at May 2020):

  • Steve Bracks – Chair, WoMEDA Board
  • Peter Dawkins – Vice-Chancellor and President, Victoria University (Deputy Chair)
  • Wade Noonan - Executive Director, WoMEDA
  • Ameet Bains – CEO, Western Bulldogs Football Club
  • Louise Glanville - CEO, Victorian Legal Aid and Chair, Western Metropolitan Partnership
  • Kelly Grigsby – CEO, Wyndham City Council
  • Russell Harrison – CEO, Western Health
  • Merril Hotchkin - Head of Strategy and People, Metricon Homes
  • Bill Jaboor – Chair, Western Melbourne Regional Development Australia Committee
  • Helen Morrissey - CEO, Brimbank City Council
  • Cathy Scalzo –  CEO, Scalzo Family Office (Scalzo Food Industries)
  • Stephen Wall – CEO, Maribyrnong City Council
  • Jim Williamson - Chair, LeadWest.

Key Advisor to the Board: Rod Maddock – Lead Economist, WoMEDA.

Executive Officer: Natalie Meagher - Senior Advisor, Office of the Vice-Chancellor, Victoria University.

Former Victorian Premier Steve Bracks, Chair of the WoMEDA board.