Melway still beats Google Maps?

The other day the publishers of Melbourne’s Melway street directory boasted that their maps were more up to date than Google Maps. It reminded me of an experience I had the other month.

I had spent a morning near Footscray station, waiting to photograph a steam train headed from Newport to Castlemaine.

D3 639 heads towards Southern Cross at Footscray, using the Werribee suburban tracks

My vantage point was in the middle of a public park, but I didn’t know the name of it.

Looking towards the city from Fordham Reserve

I plugged ‘Footscray’ in Google Maps, scrolled around a bit, and ended up with this map – no dice!

Footscray's Fordham Reserve on Google Maps

I then headed over to, which uses Melway maps, and found my answer.

Footscray's Fordham Reserve on a Melway map

Turns out Fordham Reserve is the park I had been standing in.

The plot thickens

On closer inspection, in the above example the Melway map is actually out of date – the connection from Whitehall Street into Neilson Place was severed back in December 2011 when Regional Rail Link works commenced through Footscray, yet it is still shown as a through road.

North end of Neilson Place blocked off for RRL construction

I believe that still uses Melway maps dating back to 2010, which might explain the discrepancy.


The Regional Rail Link Authority is part way through reinstating the Fordham Reserve, as during the construction of the two additional tracks through Footscray, the entire area was a work site.

Widening the north side of the cutting at Wightman Street

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11 Responses to “Melway still beats Google Maps?”

  1. Ian Woodcock says:

    Marcus – have you come across HERE maps?
    Maybe you can give us a review.

  2. Simon Russell says:

    OpenStreetMap of course also has the name of the park. Not the missing connection between Whitehall etc, but I guess you could fix it 🙂

  3. Andrew says:

    I find Google Maps is usually adequate, but there have been quite a few times when only the Melways online showed me what I needed to know.

  4. Andrew S says:

    The Melway maps in are from a few years ago – on the closer zoom Peninsula Link is under construction, and on the key map view it is still marked as proposed, so older still!

    Over in your part of the world you will see the Geelong bypass is still under construction at Waurn Ponds to connect with the Princes Highway to Colac.

  5. Aladar says:

    Marcus, have you tried Melway online map? It’s up to date.

    • Marcus Wong says:

      I had that site pointed out to me the other week, but I had forgotten all about it!

      As for the coverage of Footscray, the streets are now correct, but the ‘Fordham Reserve’ label has been removed!

  6. I’m a developer working with Melway now to bring the very latest edition 42 Melway maps to our iMelway iOS app. The latest available iMelway has edition 41, which is still more up-to-date than the online maps.

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