Two anti-terror concrete bollards at Melbourne's Southern Cross Station have been given a colourful makeover.
Melbourne artist David Gray, who has now been nicknamed the "bollard bandit", hand-sewed covers for two of the bollards in a move to beautify what some Melbournians have called, a public eyesore.
— Hannah Francis (@han_francisco) June 28, 2017
Gray told the ABC on Thursday he wanted to turn the bollards into a space for "art, not advertising" after hearing people complain about their appearance.
"The City of Melbourne could turn this into a fantastic art space, there's five panels which artists could just cover with amazing temporary stuff," he said.
And it's safe to say, the locals are loving them.
Ladies and Gentlemen... Melbourne's best dressed bollardhttps://t.co/vORWSqdi7C— Nick Wiggins (@nick__w) June 28, 2017
Art bollards should be a thing. It's just so... Melbourne? https://t.co/vCEoaAU39w— Terence Huynh (@terencehuynh) June 28, 2017
More than 50 of the bollards were strategically placed around Southern Cross Station's major entry points last week in a $10 million effort from the state government to prevent vehicle-style attacks, such as the Bourke Street incident in January which killed six people.
"We weren't going to wait around for six months or twelve months while planter boxes are built so they look better," Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews said.
"The threat of terror -- the threat of hostile vehicle attacks, the threats to public safety -- are all too real."
Up to 140 more bollards were also placed across eight prominent Melbourne sites including the Queen Victoria Market, Flinders Street Station and Federation Square.
Since the construction of the barriers in Melbourne, bollards have also popped up in Sydney and plans have been made for the Gold Coast to install them by the end of 2017. The move follows Adelaide, which made the move earlier this year to place permanent bollards in Rundle Mall in order to increase security and control traffic flow to the area.
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