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Proud Victorian!
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Still can't see this getting up, particularly in light of tomorrow's election result.

Eagles and bees could find a home in CBD skinny tower plan

Homes for peregrine falcons, native bees or even wedge-tailed eagles could be incorporated into the design of Melbourne’s most ambitious skyscraper.

The Royal Society of Victoria is pushing ahead with preliminary plans for its “Magic Tower”, a skinny structure for the organisation’s triangle of land on the edge of the Melbourne CBD.

The spare land — just 250sq m — at the point of the Latrobe and Victoria streets junction would be the location for a blade-like landmark up to 330m high.

Society president David Zerman said both the tower and the organisation’s adjoining grounds would be designed to support a variety of plants and animals.

“We will be looking at how our entire site ... can be designed to support urban biodiversity through incorporating ecological niches for diverse indigenous species, from wedge-tailed eagles to native bees, from hardy escarpment plantings to shade and moisture-loving gardens.’’

His comments come as the society has signed a formal agreement to progress with the idea for the slender building, first revealed in May by the Herald Sun.

Mr Zerman signed the deal with Daniel Grollo of construction giant Grocon and Dylan Brady of deciBel Architecture.

“We don’t yet know the final scale or character of the proposed triangular building at the tip of our block,’’ Mr Zerman said.

“The site remains unique, as does the architectural, engineering, business and planning challenge of realising the opportunity presented.’’

Royal Society chief executive Michael Flattley said 80 per cent of their members had voted to proceed with the project.

“It comes with the caveat that members are involved and we can activate the knowledge of those members,’’ he said.

Concerns had been raised about the heritage impacts of the project on the nearby Royal Exhibition Building and Carlton Gardens South.

The tower needs council, state and federal approval, as well as heritage clearance before the first sod is turned.

The project aims to use the latest innovations in science and engineering.

Profits from the project would fund a science engagement centre, upgrade the society’s headquarters and create an endowment fund for projects and awards.

“The project is underwriting the society’s vision for the next century,’’ Mr Flattley said.

Mr Brady has said the structure aimed to celebrate science and was not for the profit of a developer.
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