WATER: How does NSW make sure it doesn’t get so close to Day Zero again?

According to one of the authors of a new report the focus on water in NSW has traditionally been on centralised infrastructure that utilities want to build rather than water efficiency. But what saved us during the Millennium Drought was the citizens, not utilities. Nor was it the winding back the BASIX sustainability index that some quarters advocate.

Atlassian’s new HQ at Sydney’s Tech Central lures long time Lendlease talent

The chance to work on Atlassian’s new hybrid timber Sydney headquarters was enough to lure Lendlease sustainability manager Matt Williams to join LCI Consultants as principal of the sustainability team, after nearly 20 years with his former employer. The building services consultancy has managed to snag a spot alongside Stantec to do the building services […]

Exciting news for affordable housing in our most expensive cities

There’s good news for affordable accommodation in Sydney and Melbourne. In fact, it’s exciting if you consider the co-living, co-operative and shared equity housing that Landcom in Sydney has in mind, and the twin key apartments in Melbourne, thanks to a lovely collaboration. Landcom boss John Brogden flagged the possibilities for radically different affordable housing […]

Will streamlining planning make a difference to housing outcomes?

There has been a lot of talk by developer lobby groups about the need to unclog the planning system to assist economic recovery post COVID 19. And the NSW government is putting out media releases saying that rapid approvals are injecting billions of dollars into the state’s economy. Thinking that approvals are going to lead […]

Sydney’s complacent planning when we need resilience and urgent change

What do you get for $2.5 million in Sydney? The NSW Department of Planning, Industry and Environment has been throwing this sort of money at Sydney councils to do some strategic planning, and is just about to learn how poor value-for-money Sydney can be.

High streets and how to make them great people places

High Streets are the lifeblood of a city. They’ll be back after the current COVID-19 fears inevitably subside, but we need to ensure they’re designed for vibrancy and people.

New thinking needed to address Sydney growth constraints

If government won’t explore innovative ways to grow Sydney’s CBD, perhaps the private sector – with all its faults – may be our only hope. It sometimes seems that planning is as much a concealing and evasive discipline as it is a coordinating and enabling one. As explained recently in The Fifth Estate, Pyrmont is […]

Less is more when it comes to renovating homes

Architects are discovering that keeping some of the old features of our homes can be more sustainable than installing new materials and technology.

5 examples of adaptive reuse, from Sydney to Shanghai

We aren’t used to seeing Shanghai and adaptive reuse in the same sentence but increasingly the city’s designers are seeking texture and richness to counter the everything-is-new gloss of the city.

Ultimo Pyrmont – A neighbourhood and community not to be messed with!

Approving Star City’s proposed tower would destroy a rare example of planning gone “right”, when planners, politicians and the community worked together. The latest Pyrmont debate is an important one and it’s worth putting some background on the table to inform the way forward.  The NSW Department of Planning established a team of planners in […]

On why we called the next Tomorrowland I, human

News from the front desk 452: Tomorrowland is back. This year we’ve named our yearly signature event I, human in the climate emergency. The title was obvious. We have fast convergence of two of the most powerful forces in our history – technology and its latest iteration artificial intelligence, and the rapidly unfolding climate emergency. […]

Rolling the dice on planning at Star casino and its giant proposal

The scale of Star City’s proposed hotel and apartment tower has ignited opposition, but why is nobody talking about what’s really going on? Here’s a look at how manipulating planning rules can create massive uplift in value – for private hands at almost no cost. Like money out of thin air in fact…

The minister for Sydney needs to think about more than boosterism  

Remarkably attractive council housing in London is still being built and fits nicely within existing neighbourhoods. And Paris is undergoing something of a boom in high quality social housing that also fits within existing development patterns. A Minister for Sydney: Whacko, at long last we’re going to get one!!! Ahhh, well, actually no; just support […]

 Save Our Suburbs rejects Posh Sydney label

OPINION: Philip Bull’s article “Posh Sydney says No to density” incorporates an inaccurate, emotive attack on me that requires a response.

Posh Sydney says No to density – it’s a thing

There is an abundance of self interest in the collaboration between the Save Our Suburbs crowd and developer lobby The Urban Task Force – in furious agreement to stop medium density in middle ring leafy suburbs. But why? And is it fair?

Managing Sydney’s industrial land – striking the balance

The debate about Sydney’s employment lands isn’t over, with urban planner Benjamin Craig advocating for greater flexibility in the city’s approach to industrial and urban services land to better accommodate the jobs of the future.

Philip Thalis on Sydney’s future: public treasures or throwaway junk buildings?

The nature of Sydney’s built environment and its brand has been under siege from a range of critics in recent years. Now renowned architect and City of Sydney councillor Philip Thalis has waded into the fray with a searing look at what will happen to public Sydney under the current regime of how it treats its built environment.

NSW transport reshuffle a chance to rethink mobility

OPINION: The NSW government’s recent announcement that Roads and Maritime Services – until now the state’s standalone roads agency – will be integrated into Transport for NSW could not have come at a more opportune time. 

On different ways to meet our gladiator complex

 The thing about the Allianz Stadium in Sydney is that tearing it down is a massive waste of resources. In an era when the “buy nothing new” campaign threatens (or promises) to morph into a “build nothing new”, that’s a serious thing.

How Sydney is getting its night time mojo back

Sydney’s nightlife has suffered dreadful and high profile setbacks after the lockout laws came into play, but the NSW government and councils are now pulling out all stops to revive it. Integral to this campaign is reorienting the night time economy so that it’s about more than just drinking and nightclubbing.

JLL: Sustainability Manager

JLL is looking for a sustainability manager with a passion for sustainability issues.

Time for Sydney to take cycling seriously

As the world’s list of cities undergoing a cycling revolution continues to grow, you wonder when Sydney will finally reach a tipping point and take cycling as a mode of transport seriously, writes landscape architect Jason Packenham.