Fw: Mon.8.3.21 daily digest
  Roderick Smith

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Subject: Mon.8.3.21 daily digest

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Mon.8.3.21 Metro Twitter
Buses replace trains Dandenong - Pakenham from 20.00 until the last train of Mon 8 Mar (level-crossing works).
Heading to Moomba this weekend?  You can travel for free by downloading one of our travel vouchers at http://ptv.vic.gov.au/moomba ;  Vouchers are valid until 23.59.   Face masks are mandatory on public transport.
0.03 Werribee line: Buses replace trains Laverton - Werribee, and are expected to remain in operation until 6.00.
- Trains have resumed from first services after repairs have been completed overnight.
Buses replace trains Dandenong - Pakenham until the last train (level-crossing works).
9.24 Frankston line: Delays up to 30 minutes in the Mordialloc area (an 'operational issue').
- 10.31 Delays up to 15 minutes, reducing.
- Apparently a driver left a cab door open.
Buses replace trains North Melbourne - Sunbury from 20.25 until the last train (maintenance works).

Victoria’s rapid rise in renewables to slash prices, threaten coal Nick Toscano and Miki Perkins. March 2, 2021

‘Closures any day’: Coal-fired power plants in peril as prices plunge. Nick Toscano March 8, 2021. 320 comments

10 days without local transmission, one new case in hotel quarantine. Eliza Sum and Shannon Deery March 8, 2021. 313 comments [with ATN]

Melbourne comes back to life with $100m revival plan. Simone Mitchell March 8, 2021
Melbourne social life is at the heart of this buzzing city. And it’s bursting back to life.
Source: Visit Victoria
To put it lightly, Melbourne has had a rough trot.
It endured tougher lockdowns than any other Australian city. But Melbourne’s buzzing social life is a key part of its personality. And the bounce back is spectacular.
You just can’t break this city’s spirit.
As someone who lives in Melbourne, I can confirm the revival has well and truly begun. While there is a huge sense of respect for the (necessary) new COVID safety practices, people are thrilled to be back in the city, embracing all the things Melbourne is known for: food, shopping, culture, art, theatre and sport. It’s amazing to watch my beloved city get back on its feet.
The city’s laneways are humming with freshly installed al fresco spaces. It feels positively European, with bars and restaurants spilling out onto the street. A rooftop cinema has opened above one of the city’s finest wine bars, Embla. Chef Andrew McConnell’s hotly-anticipated restaurant, Gimlet, is the new must-visit eatery. Live music is being revived, theatre and events are returning, and the sound of a cheering crowd can once again be heard at sports grounds. The city’s galleries are throwing open their doors, and Melbourne’s enviable shopping scene (of which the super cool new 80 Collins Street retail and dining precinct is a highlight), is coming back to life.
Source: Tourism Australia
A $100 million revival plan has been put into place to get Melbourne thriving again, and safety is a huge part of this strategy. COVIDSafe hubs are popping up at key locations throughout the city and businesses have implemented strict COVID safe protocols into their operations. Contactless payments, face masks, state-of-the-art sanitisation systems, strict venue capacities, social distancing systems and QR code sign-ins have become part of life throughout Melbourne. This is a city that is protective of its freedom after a tough year, so people’s safety and comfort are paramount. And everyone is playing their part.
The focus on safety will be a big drawcard for not only Melburnians venturing back into their beloved city, but for those flying in for a city break. A recent YouGov poll of over 1500 Australians found that health and safety was top of mind for people looking to book their next trip. Over 40 per cent of people said safety protocols were one of the most important considerations they thought about before booking a holiday.
Someone who is thrilled to see Melbourne open again is actor Tom Wren, who plays Draco Malfoy in the acclaimed theatre production of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child. The show – which is being run exclusively in Melbourne - just returned to the Princess Theatre after a 49-week hiatus.
Wren said it feels amazing to be back on stage in front of an audience, albeit at 50 per cent capacity to ensure a COVIDSafe experience for theatre-goers.
“It’s been cathartic after a very rough year,” he said.
Source: Cultural Attractions of Australia
“It’s brilliant seeing an audience processing their first live theatre event in a year … and digesting what it means to be back in the world of live intimate performance, sharing spaces with other people. 
“It’s a real testament to Melbourne and Australia that we are the only Harry Potter and the Cursed Child show to open for audiences through the world at the moment. I’ve received texts from the cast in the UK and the US saying how much it means for them to see pictures of us reopening. They say it gives them hope.”
Another person who is happy to be back doing what he loves is Adam D’Sylva, one of Australia’s most celebrated chefs. 
As well as heading up iconic Melbourne restaurants Coda and Tonka, D’Sylva is the new Culinary Creative Director at the city’s shiny new W hotel (which opened in February). 
“Melbourne is getting its pulse back,” said D’Sylva. 
“People are feeling safe and comfortable to come and have that amazing city experience again.  And with major events returning it’s bringing a lot of excitement with it. On Saturday night the city was back to its normal vibe. 
Source: Tourism Australia
“The W – which has implemented an incredibly high standard of COVID-safe practices - is bustling. It’s great that people are venturing out again. We have the best CBD in Australia. It has that cosmopolitan, European feel with all these amazing nooks and crannies to explore. All the best restaurants are in the city … to be able to walk the laneways and feel part of the hustle and bustle again is magic.”
A series of new COVID-safe events are also an integral part of the revival plan. City-wide treasure hunts and cycling challenges are just a couple of examples of new initiatives that will entice people into the CBD. 
There will also be a series of activities at the new ACMI complex in the iconic Federation Square. Part of a $40 million redevelopment, the Australian Centre for the Moving Image now has brand new high-tech facilities, free exhibitions, cinemas and restaurants. It’s fun for young and old.
Anyone flying into Melbourne for a visit should also check out the brand new URBNSURF surf park right near the airport. The state-of-the-art wave pool provides perfect, realistic waves in an authentic and safe environment. There’s also a Three Blue Ducks restaurant onsite, so you can refuel with top-notch food after your surf. 
To use a (fitting) analogy for a city that so loves its sport: just when you thought Melbourne was down for the count, it comes back swinging. Stronger than ever before.

Mon.8.3.21 Melbourne 'Herald Sun' Letters:
* Driven by hypocrisy. THE closure of car and parking lanes in Melbourne will bring in an influx of funds for the council.  Naturally, the majority of council-owned vehicles being used to drive the Lord Mayor and all the other councillors around can be sold off.  Providing them with bikes will be considerably cheaper.  After all, Sally Capp and the other councillors, particularly the Greens, can’t possibly be such hypocrites as to believe they are so important that they can sit in the back of a car and be chauffeured around.  If bike lanes, trams and trains are the answer for every other Melburnian’s transport needs, then they are also the answer for theirs.