Melbourne’s St Kilda Hall was recently abuzz with the launch of Swamped: a multidisciplinary exhibition of future water scenarios imagined through architectural expressions of community-envisioned solutions. Swamped uses the suburb of Elwood as a case study, and its official opening saw researchers and dignitaries discuss balancing resilience in future climate scenarios.

How might flood modelling, urban design, community vision and more culminate in places more resilient to future climates?

Hosted by the City of Port Phillip, and presented by the Cooperative Research Centre for Water Sensitive Cities (CRCWSC) together with Monash Art, Design & Architecture (MADA), Swamped is a multidisciplinary exhibition that imagines solutions by speculating on the possible futures shaped by climate change and rapid urbanisation.

The month-long exhibition was officially opened on 28 February. Speaking at the launch were Councillor Bernadene Voss, Mayor of the City of Port Phillip, and key CRCWSC faces: Professor Tony Wong, CEO; and Professor Nigel Bertram, also from MADA. Attended by City of Port Phillip councillors, CRCWSC researchers, community members, representatives from local councils, South East Water, and the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning, the evening was a chance for learning and discussion. Also attending were CRCWSC students on the cusp of similar projects.

Featuring urban design proposals for Elwood, case studies of other similar wetlands, and interactive modelling. As sea levels rise, and storm surges and drought threaten, Swamped asks: what will happen to Elwood? This is an exhibition that ultimately asks us to rethink the way a city is conceived; defined not by traditional markers of politics or economics, but by the water that trickles through it.

Don’t miss out: Swamped runs till 22 March 2017 at the St Kilda Town Hall, Melbourne.

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