King Street, Melbourne
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|King Street, facing north from Flinders St|
|Length||2 km (1 mi)|
|Route number(s)||State Route 60|
|National Route 79|
|NW end|| Curzon Street,
|SE end|| Kings Way,
King Street is a main street in the Melbourne central business district. King Street is used to be part of National Route 1 until the city by-pass road linking the Monash Freeway with the Westgate Freeway was completed. The street is named after Phillip Gidley King, Governor of New South Wales.
King Street is considered a hub of Melbourne's nightlife, and is home to many nightclubs, topless bars and restaurants. King Street is also home to Victoria University's City King St campus. Towards the northern end of King Street are the Flagstaff Gardens.
Buildings and architecture
In terms of architecture, there are many notable buildings on the street. The street crosses Melbourne's financial heart and many of Melbourne's tallest office towers line either side of the street, especially between Collins and Bourke Streets. The area was once lined with bluestone warehouses, some examples of which still exist to this day. The street has many examples of modern architecture, some designed by Yuncken Freeman who also had their offices located on the street.
The street is home to St James Old Cathedral, an Anglican church, although it is not the church's original site. It was relocated from originally stood near the corner of Collins Street and William Street in 1914. Lazar Restaurant (numbers 234-238), a three storey bluestone warehouse built in 1858 is one of Melbourne's oldest and is heritage registered. Another fine example is the three story 1890's building at 121 King Street (corner of King and Little Collins). Once a storage facility for Ferguson's Winery, today it is home to Envato. The Former New Zealand Mercantile building (1909), one of Melbourne's rare unusual Edwardian buildings is on the corner of King and Collins opposite the Rialto Towers (1986) once Melbourne's tallest. The Melbourne Stock Exchange (1990), another large post modern glass tower is on the opposite corner.
Among the notable demolitions on the street are the Federal Coffee Palace (1888-1972) and Robb's Buildings (1885), which made way for the Rialto Towers, both on the corner of King and Collins, with its observation deck with views over Southbank, Docklands, and Port Phillip Bay.
Adult entertainment district
During the 1980s, the south end of King Street and in adjacent Flinders Street, 19th century warehouses were converted into night clubs.
King Street is Melbourne's main nightclub district and a mecca for strip bars. On Saturday nights the whole district is a mass of activity. Melbourne's largest clubs including Tramp, Inflation (Cloud Nine), La Di Da, Brown Alley & Sorry Grandma make up the key clubs along the strip which attract thousands of party goers over a weekend.
- The collapse of the new King Street Bridge on 10 July 1962.