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Melbourne, Florida
—  City  —


Nickname(s): The Harbor City
Location in Brevard County and the state of Florida
Coordinates: 28°6′54″N 80°37′55″W / 28.115°N 80.63194°W / 28.115; -80.63194Coordinates: 28°6′54″N 80°37′55″W / 28.115°N 80.63194°W / 28.115; -80.63194
Country  United States
State  Florida
County Brevard
Settled c. 1867
Incorporated (village) 22 December 1888
 - Type Council-Manager
 - Mayor Harry Goode
 - City Manager Jack M. Schluckebier
Area [1]
 - City 35.49 sq mi (91.9 km2)
 - Land 30.20 sq mi (78.2 km2)
 - Water 5.29 sq mi (13.7 km2)  14.9%
Elevation 20 ft (6 m)
Population (2008)[2][3]
 - City 77,351
 Metro 536,521
  Census Bureau estimate
Time zone EST (UTC-5)
 - Summer (DST) EDT (UTC-4)
ZIP code 32901, 32934, 32935, 32940, 32902, 32912, 32936, 32941
Area code(s) 321
FIPS code 12-43975[4]
GNIS feature ID 0294589[5]
Website City of Melbourne

Melbourne is a city in Brevard County, Florida, United States. As of 2008, the population estimated by the U.S. Census Bureau is 77,351.[2] Melbourne is a principal city of the Palm Bay – Melbourne – Titusville, Florida Metropolitan Statistical Area.

The city was named Melbourne in honor of its first postmaster, Cornthwaite John Hector, an Englishman who had spent much of his life in Melbourne, Australia.[6]




Early human occupation

Evidence for the presence of Paleo-Indians in the Melbourne area during the late Pleistocene epoch was uncovered during the 1920s. C. P. Singleton, a Harvard University zoologist, discovered the bones of a Mammoth (Mammuthus columbi) on his property along Crane Creek a mile and a half from Melbourne, and brought in Amherst College paleontologist Frederick B. Loomis to excavate the skeleton. Loomis found a second elephant, with a "large rough flint instrument"[7] among fragments of the elephant's ribs. Loomis found in the same stratum mammoth, mastodon, horse, ground sloth, tapir, pessary, camel and saber-tooth cat bones, all extinct in Florida since the end of the Pleistocene 10,000 years ago. At a nearby site a human rib and charcoal were found in association with Mylodon, Megalonyx and Chlamytherium (ground sloths) teeth. A finely worked spearpoint found with these items may have been displaced from a later stratum. In 1925 attention shifted to the Melbourne golf course. A crushed human skull with finger, arm and leg bones was found in association with a horse tooth. A piece of ivory that appeared to have been modified by humans was found at the bottom of the stratum containing bones. Other finds included a spear point near a mastodon bone and a turtle-back scraper and a blade found with bear, camel, mastodon, horse and tapir bones.[8] Similar human remains, Pleistocene animals and Paleo-Indian artefacts were found in Vero Beach, 30 miles south of Melbourne, and similar Paleo-Indian artefacts were found at Helen Blazes, ten miles southwest of Melbourne.


The Hotel Carleton c. 1907

Melbourne originally was a training area for Confederate soldiers during the American Civil War.[citation needed] Some soldiers, who were attracted to the river and the ocean, returned and bought land at 5 cents per acre.[citation needed] After the Civil War, pioneer families arrived and Melbourne was founded in the late 1860s by former slaves. The city was named Melbourne in honor of its first postmaster, Cornthwaite John Hector, an Englishman who had spent much of his life in Melbourne, Australia.[6] The first school in Melbourne was built in 1883 and is now owned and on permanent exhibit on the Florida Tech campus. By 1885, the town had 70 people.[9] The Greater Allen Chapel African Methodist Episcopal Church was founded in 1885 and is still active.[10]

In the late 1890s, the Brownlie-Maxwell Funeral Home opened and is still in business. The oldest black-owned business in the county is Tucker's Cut-Rate plumbing. It opened in 1934.[11]

In late 1942 the Naval Air Station Melbourne was established as a site to train newly commissioned Navy and Marine pilots for WWII. The program ran until 1946, and the land that was used for that program makes up most of what is currently the Melbourne International Airport.[12] In 1969, the cities of Eau Gallie and Melbourne voted to merge, forming modern day Melbourne.


Melbourne is located approximately 60 miles (97 km) southeast of Orlando on the Space Coast along Interstate 95. It is approximately midway between Jacksonville and Miami. According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 35.49 square miles (91.9 km2). 30.20 square miles (78.2 km2) of it is land and 5.29 square miles (13.7 km2) of it (14.9%) is water.[1]

The east-west street, Brevard Avenue was historically the "center" of town; with addresses called "north" and "south" of this street. The north-south Babcock street provided the same centerline for "east" and "west" direction.


The city has a Koppen climate classification of Cf with a year-round distribution of rainfall. This means a humid subtropical climate with hot, humid summers.[13]

Snow is rare. The last snowfall recorded was January 9, 2010.[citation needed]

Monthly Normal and Record High and Low Temperatures
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Rec High °F 89 92 93 97 97 101 102 101 98 96 91 89
Norm High °F 72 73 77 81 85 89 91 90 88 83 78 73
Norm Low °F 50 51 55 60 66 71 72 73 72 67 60 53
Rec Low °F 17 27 25 35 47 55 60 60 58 41 30 20
Precip (in) 2.48 2.49 2.92 2.08 3.94 5.83 5.38 5.78 7.20 4.76 3.12 2.31


As of the census[4] of 2000, there were 71,382 people, 30,788 households, and 18,257 families residing in the city. The population density was 2,363.9/mi² (912.6/km²). There were 33,678 housing units at an average density of 1,115.3/mi² (430.6/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 84.53% White, 9.33% African American, 0.34% Native American, 2.32% Asian, 0.07% Pacific Islander, 1.20% from other races, and 2.21% from two or more races. Hispanics or Latinos of any race constitute 5.54% of the population.

There were 30,788 households out of which 24.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 44.0% were married couples living together, 11.5% had a female householder with no husband present, and 40.7% were non-families. 32.9% of all households were made up of individuals and 13.3% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.22 and the average family size was 2.82.

In the city the population was spread out with 20.7% under the age of 18, 9.3% from 18 to 24, 28.4% from 25 to 44, 21.9% from 45 to 64, and 19.7% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 40 years. For every 100 females there were 94.3 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 91.1 males.


Personal income

The median income for a household in the city was $34,571, and the median income for a family was $42,760. Males had a median income of $32,242 versus $22,419 for females. The per capita income for the city was $19,175. In Melbourne, about 8.6% of families and 11.5% of the population were below the poverty line, including 15.4% of those under age 18 and 8.5% of those age 65 or over.


The Melbourne International Airport is located near the center of the city. Melbourne is one of the cities which makes up the Palm Bay-Melbourne-Titusville metropolitan area. Its proximity to Orlando and access to the beach have helped establish a tourism industry. It has the second largest population on the Space Coast. Melbourne contains defense and technology companies with a high concentration of high-tech workers.[15] The following corporations have operations in Melbourne:

In May 2005, the Melbourne-Titusville-Palm Bay area was among the top 20 in home price appreciation from 2003 to 2004.[17] Melbourne is also home to the Florida Institute of Technology and houses a campus for the Brevard Community College (BCC).

LiveTV has its headquarters in Melbourne.[18]


In 2007, the average size of Melbourne's labor force was 39,391. Of that group, 37,708 were employed and 1,683 were unemployed, for an unemployment rate of 4.3%.[19]


In 2008, 259 building permits were issued for 263 units. There were 209 permits issued for 320 units in 2007, which was down from 329 permits for 512 units in 2006.[20]

The median home price in 2007 was $215,000.[19]


In 2009, Forbes ranked the area 18th out of 100 MSAs and first out of 8 metros in Florida for affordable housing, and short commute times, among others.[21]


The area has three hospitals, day care for senior citizens, hospice, walk-in and urgent care facilities.[22]

Arts and culture

Annual cultural events

  • The annual Melbourne Independent Filmmakers' Festival, held in early November, provides a venue for new filmmaker talent.
  • The Melbourne Area Pilots Association hosts a General Aviation Day at Melbourne International Airport in September.
  • The Annual IndiaFest And India Day that are held in February and in August.
  • The Melbourne Arts Festival, held in April, draws from 50,000-60,000 visitors.[23]
  • The Melbourne Oktoberfest has been held each October since 1977.[24] Most recently this was held at the Wickham Park Pavilion.

Museums and points of interest

Historic sites

There are three places on the National Register of Historic Places[25]:

The following places are also historic:


Performing arts




Melbourne also was an official host city for the 1996 Olympic Torch Relay.[26]

Parks, recreation, and attractions

The City of Melbourne contains over 554.72 acres (2.2449 km2) of city park land, including 17 community parks[27], 13 neighborhood parks[28], and five smaller city parks[29].


The Melbourne City Council consists of the mayor and six district council members[30][31]. Melbourne utilizes a Council-Manager form of government[32].

City Officials[33]

  • Harry Goode, Mayor - Re-elected on November 2008, term expires November 2012
  • Mike Nowlin, District 1 Council Member - Elected on November 2008, term expires November 2012
  • Mark LaRusso, District 2 Council Member - Elected on November 2006, term expires November 2010
  • Kathy Meehan, District 3 Council Member - Re-elected on November 2004, term expires November 2012
  • John Thomas, District 4 Council Member and Vice Mayor - Elected on November 2006, term expires November 2010
  • Molly Tasker, District 5 Council Member - Elected on November 2008, term expires November 2012
  • Joanne Corby, District 6 Council Member - Elected on November 2006, term expires November 2010
  • Paul R. Gougelman, III, City Attorney
  • Jack M. Schluckebier, City Manager
  • Cathleen A. Wysor, City Clerk

Melbourne city officials created the Babcock Street Redevelopment District in 1998 to stimulate new development along Babcock Street from U.S. 1 south to U.S. 192. A 218-unit apartment complex being built is just the latest (2005) step in an effort to revitalize this area.

Melbourne is also attempting to revitalize the downtown Eau Gallie Riverfront district.

A $156 million budget was proposed for the 2007-8 fiscal year.[34]

In 2007, the city had a taxable real estate base of $4.96 billion.[35]

A local soup kitchen has been trying to expand its facility since 2005. Neighbors have opposed this thereby stopping the expansion.[36]

Public health and safety

In 2010, the city employed 170 police, 140 of which were unionized.[37]

A 2009 survey indicated that the city was ranked 84 out of 400 in crime statistics, with #1 being the worst. Crimes included murder, rape, robbery, aggravated assault, burglary, and motor vehicle theft.[38]

A 2009 Halloween street party sponsored by a downtown restaurant, attracted an estimated 8,000-10,000 people. This overwhelmed the downtown area. Police could not function. Street parties were curtailed until public safety issued were addressed.[39]


88.5% of all residents 25 years or older are high school graduates. 25.7% have a Bachelor's Degree or higher.[19]

Public Schools are run by the Brevard County School Board.

Colleges and universities

Elementary Schools [42]

  • Roy Allen Elementary
  • Ascension Catholic School
  • Dr. W. J. Creel Elementary
  • Croton Elementary
  • Harbor City Elementary
  • Holy Trinity Episcopal Academy Lower School (Preschool – 6)
  • Longleaf Elementary
  • Meadowlane Primary[43]
  • Meadowlane Intermediate[44]
  • New Covenant Christian School
  • Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic School
  • Quest Elementary
  • Sabal Elementary
  • Sherwood Elementary
  • Suntree Elementary
  • University Park Elementary

Middle Schools

  • Ascension Catholic School
  • Central Middle School
  • Florida Air Academy
  • Holy Trinity Episcopal Academy Upper School
  • L. B. Johnson Middle School
  • New Covenant Christian School
  • Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic School
  • Stone Middle School
  • West Shore Junior/Senior High School

High Schools

Adult education

  • Palm Bay High Adult/Community Education
  • South Area Adult Center





Cable is provided by Bright House Networks.



Major roads

All are at least four-lane roads, unless otherwise designated.

  • US 1.svg U.S. 1
  • Harbor City Boulevard is the local street name, and it runs parallel to the Indian River on the eastern side of the city. This road allows access to the beaches over 3 causeways: Pineda, Eau Gallie, and Melbourne Causeway.
  • US 192.svg U.S. Route 192
  • Locally named New Haven Avenue and Strawbridge Avenue (downtown), pass through commercial, entertainment, and retail areas of Melbourne. It serves as a route to Kissimmee and the tourist corridor of Orlando to the west, and the town of Indialantic to the east via the Melbourne Causeway.
  • I-95.svg Interstate 95
    • There are two exits - Exit 180 (U.S. Route 192) and Exit 183 (Eau Gallie Blvd.) Another interchange is being constructed near mile 188 to accommodate the expansion of the Pineda Causeway. While Exit 191 (Wickham Road) serves the Melbourne area, it is not marked as such.
  • Florida A1A.svg SR A1A
  • This road runs along the beaches and provides access to other areas of Brevard County.
  • Florida 507.svg SR 507 - Babcock Street
  • Florida 404.svg SR 404 - Pineda Causeway
  • Florida 508.svg SR 508 - NASA Boulevard
  • Florida 518.svg SR 518 - Eau Gallie Boulevard
  • Brevard County Road 509 FL.svgCR 509 - Wickham/Minton Road. Up to 38,680 cars use Wickham road weekdays. The average is 33, 850.[45]
  • Brevard County Road 511 FL.svgCR 511 - John Rodes Boulevard/Aurora Road
  • Brevard County Road 516 FL.svgCR 516 - Palm Bay Road


Historical Marker (click to enlarge)

The Union Cypress Company Railroad ran east to west through south Melbourne in the early 1900s. The mill town of Hopkins was near the present day streets of Mill Street and Main Street.

The Florida East Coast Railway runs through Melbourne, staying west of U.S. 1 through its entire run.



The Melbourne International Airport (IATA: MLBICAO: KMLBFAA LID: MLB) is located within the city limits.


Melbourne Water Tower

Power is provided by Florida Power and Light. Gas is provided by Florida City Gas.

Cable TV service is provided by Bright House Networks. Satellite reception in Florida varies from area to area and often have service interruptions with Florida’s erratic weather patterns and random cloud cover.

Traditional landline telephone service is mainly provided by AT&T, while some cable customers use Bright House Networks digital phone (VOIP) service.

Internet Service Providers in Melbourne range from various 56 kbit/s providers, AT&T (formerly BellSouth) FastAccess DSL, and Bright House Networks cable internet, which uses Road Runner as their ISP. Fiber optic networks are installed in the city mainly for business purposes and have not been integrated for home use.

The Water Department not only provides water for the city, but surrounding towns and cities for a premium, including Melbourne Beach, Indialantic, Indian Harbour Beach, Satellite Beach, Palm Shores, Melbourne Village and a portion of Brevard County. Wholesale water service is provided to West Melbourne. The total distribution area is about 100 square miles (259 km2)[48] A reverse osmosis plant on Lake Washington provides 5 million US gallons of water a day.[49] In 2003, water rates were $2.27/1,000 US gallons (3,785 l) sewer $4.47/1,000 US gallons (3,785 l).[50]

Solid Waste & Recycling is provided by Solid Waste Management, part of the City of Melbourne government's Environmental Community Outreach (ECO) Division.

Notable residents


  1. ^ a b "Florida by Place. Population, Housing, Area, and Density: 2000". US Census Bureau. Retrieved 2007-10-24. 
  2. ^ a b "Annual Estimates of the population for the Incorporated Places of Florida" (CSV). US Census Bureau. Retrieved 2009-06-23. 
  3. ^ "Annual Estimates of the population for Metropolitan and Micropolitan Statistical Areas" (CSV). US Census Bureau. Retrieved 2009-06-23. 
  4. ^ a b "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  5. ^ "US Board on Geographic Names". United States Geological Survey. 2007-10-25. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  6. ^ a b "The History of Melbourne, Florida". 
  7. ^ Purdy:23
  8. ^ Purdy:23-9
  9. ^ Kellersberger, Julia Lake. Rooted in Florida Soil, Florida Institute of Technology Press, 1971, p. 12.
  10. ^ Neale, Rick (1 March 2010). "Church has 125 reasons to smile". Melbourne, Florida: Florida Today. pp. 9A. 
  11. ^ Price, Wayne (22 March 2009). "70 years & counting". Melbourne, Florida: Florida Today.. pp. 1E. 
  12. ^ The History of Melbourne Florida
  13. ^ Randy Lascody (202-03). "The Onset of the Wet and Dry Seasons in East Central Florida- A Subtropical Wet-Dry Climate?". National Weather Service Weather Forecast Office Melbourne, FL. NOAA. 
  14. ^ "Melbourne Weather at with Weather Channel". Retrieved 2007-08-11. 
  15. ^ U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics. “Metro areas with highest percentages of high-tech workers”. Bureau of Labor Statistics website, August 25, 2003. Accessed October 23, 2007.
  16. ^ a b c "Brevard County School Budget 2009:General information". 
  17. ^ ""Home prices up 11% in fourth quarter" by Steve Kerch for MarketWatch". 
  18. ^ "Where we are." LiveTV. Retrieved on January 19, 2010.
  19. ^ a b c Melbourne Community Data Sheet Economic Development Council of Florida's Space Coast. Retrieved on 2009-07-23.
  20. ^ Building Permits United States Census Bureau. Retrieved on 2009-07-23.
  21. ^ Price, Wayne T. (8 November 2009). "Forbes:Brevard's got bang for buck". Melbourne, Florida: Florida Today. pp. 1A. 
  22. ^ Community Links - City of Melbourne, Florida
  23. ^ Best, Keilani (6 March 2010). "Festivals boost economy". Melbourne, Florida: Florida Today. pp. 7C. 
  24. ^ [1]
  25. ^ Brevard places on National Register of Historic Places
  26. ^ Information about the City of Melbourne, Florida
  27. ^ Community Parks - Parks Division - City of Melbourne, Florida
  28. ^ Neighborhood Parks - Parks Division - City of Melbourne, Florida
  29. ^ Other Parks - Parks Division - City of Melbourne, Florida
  30. ^ Map of City Council Districts - City of Melbourne, Florida
  31. ^ Melbourne City Council Members - City of Melbourne, Florida
  32. ^ Council-Manager Form of Government - City of Melbourne, Florida
  33. ^
  34. ^ Florida Today retrieved July 24, 2007
  35. ^ Dean, James (April 26, 2008). More taxes or fewer services. Florida Today. 
  36. ^ Neale, Rick and Torres, John A. (January 16, 2008). Melbourne shelves soup kitchen's expansion request. Florida Today. 
  37. ^ Downs, Megan (7 March 2010). "Union letter critical of chief". Melbourne, Florida: Florida Today. pp. 1B. 
  38. ^ Moody, R. Norman (28 November 2009). "Brevard crime up, down". Melbourne, Florida: Florida Today. pp. 5B. 
  39. ^ Cervenra, Susanne (13 January 2010). "Melbourne council suspends gated street events". Florida Today (Melbourne, Florida: Florida Today): pp. 1B. 
  40. ^ Keiser University
  41. ^ Everest University
  42. ^ Schools Listing
  43. ^ Meadowlane Primary
  44. ^ Meadowlane Intermediate
  45. ^ Neale, Rick (February 2010). "box:System reduces Wickham delays". Melbourne, Florida: Florida Today. pp. 3A. 
  46. ^ Space Coast Area Transit official website
  47. ^ Information about Melbourne Greyhound station
  48. ^ Melbourne Water Supply retrieved June 9, 2008
  49. ^ Reverse Osmosis details and statistics - City of Melbourne retrieved June 9, 2008
  50. ^ [2]
  51. ^ Bowe Gardeners. A Tribute to Thomas Barbour (1884 - 1946) memorial dated 1976 located in Ballard Park, Melbourne, Florida.
  52. ^ Cherry, Mike (25 December 2009). "Herschel & Hurst". Melbourne, Florida: Florida Today. pp. 3C. 
  53. ^ [3]
  54. ^ [4]

See also


  • Purdy, Barbara A. (2008). Florida's People During the Last Ice Age. University Press of Florida. ISBN 978-0-8130-3204-7

External links


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