VU in the Community (VUiC) creates and enables opportunities for VU and its surrounding communities by building trusted partnerships with Local Government Areas (LGAs) and community organisations in Melbourne’s west. 

Our partnership with Maribyrnong City Council is the longest standing LGA partnership, having been formed in 2013. Since this time the partnership has delivered significant outcomes for the university, the council, and the wider community. 



The partnership between VU and Maribyrnong City Council was established in 2013 through the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding. The aim was to revitalise Footscray as a hub of knowledge, learning, creativity and opportunity, with benefits for the whole community. The relationship has since grown to focus on the Maribyrnong municipality.

Just 5km from the CBD, Maribyrnong is one of the fastest-growing municipalities in Australia and a natural gateway to western Melbourne. Footscray is considered a priority business precinct for Melbourne, making it a focus of significant opportunity and investment.

Footscray has:  

  • two of VU’s campuses – Footscray Park and Footscray Nicholson 
  • one of the busiest railway stations outside Melbourne’s CBD 
  • an incredibly diverse population (over 150 different cultures are represented) 
  • a thriving arts and recreation scene. 

Through harnessing University and community knowledge and resources, Footscray is a smart, creative and vibrant community; a liveable, sustainable and prosperous town, providing access to opportunities and celebrating, and benefiting from, its diverse communities.


What we're doing in Maribyrnong

Maribyrnong is home to VU and an important focus of VU’s efforts to focus on connecting and creating opportunities for local community.

VU continues to engage with and contribute to the vibrancy of Maribyrnong while positioning Footscray as a University Town. This is done through joint-advocacy to attract significant investment in the Footscray region and advance regional priorities in broader forums, place-making, knowledge sharing, pathways and many other initiatives.

Community projects have included:

  • Victoria Police Diversity Recruitment Program
  • Footscray Art Prize
  • Picturing Footscray Photography prize
  • Deck Out West
  • One Night in Footscray
  • Protecting Country Garden at Footscray High School
  • Game Changers Conversation series.

Smart Cities

Maribyrnong City Council, in partnership with Victoria University, rolled out new smart technologies as part of the Footscray Smart City for Social Cohesion project.

Footscray has been placed in a league with other smart cities around the world thanks to a $400,000 Australian Government Smart Cities and Suburbs Program grant and boosted by funding from Council and VU.

The project resulted in the installation of:

  • air quality monitoring sensors
  • energy efficient smart lighting
  • expanded free public WiFi
  • pedestrian, cyclist and vehicle counting technology
  • interactive signage
  • Footscray Park app
  • integrated Smart City data platform developed by our College of Sport, Health and Engineering.

Footscray Learning Precinct

Victoria University is proud to be a key partner in the Footscray Learning Precinct.

The precinct is an ambitious program offering an integrated framework for education – from kindergarten through to university. Located in Melbourne’s inner west, it is Australia’s largest education hub.

The precinct creates new ways to champion excellence in learning and teaching. It creates new opportunities for students at every stage of education. It will provide a seamless path from early learning to adult education, making education more accessible for the Footscray community than ever before.

FOOTscray: Take a walk on the west side

Take a page out of the local's guide and explore Footscray on foot. You’ll find all you need when walking from Footscray Train Station to Victoria University’s Footscray Park Campus. 

Grab a coffee, pick up some lunch, do some op shopping, and shop for dinner. The options are endless. 

Download a digital copy of the map
llustrations by Carla McRae, design by Hello Idea.