Last Call for Great Ideas. Assessment Panel Appointed
Last Call for Great Ideas. Assessment Panel Appointed

Last Call for Great Ideas. Assessment Panel Appointed

UrbanGrowth NSW today issued a last call for submissions to the Call for Great Ideas for the transformation of The Bays Precinct, as it announced the appointment of a 6-member Independent Assessment Panel which will impartially assess the ideas.

The Call for Great Ideas closes on 20 July 2015.

The Independent Assessment Panel will be chaired by former mayor of Christchurch, Sir Bob Parker, who oversaw the rebuilding of the city after the 2010 - 2011 earthquake sequence, including through a similar ‘call for ideas’ process.

Dr Simon Longstaff AO, Executive Director of the St James Ethics Centre, has been appointed Fairness Advisor.

The Panel will assess compliant submissions after they have been reviewed by a Community Advisory Panel and a Technical Advisory Panel.

The Community Advisory Panel is currently being established in consultation with the community, and will comprise local and Greater Sydney representatives.

The Technical Advisory Panel comprises representatives of UrbanGrowth NSW and other State Government agencies.

“The assessment of ideas by the independent panel of experts will ensure a robust and fair process that will allow us to assemble the very best of ideas from across Sydney, Australia and beyond,” said UrbanGrowth NSW Chief Executive, David Pitchford.

“This is not a procurement or bid process, and nor is it a design competition. It is a genuine attempt to promote engagement in the transformation process, and to make sure we have the best ideas to help us with our planning – whether they are ideas from seven year olds or world-leading architects.

“The Great Ideas that prove to be viable and that demonstrate world-class thinking will inform the transformation of the Bays,” added Mr Pitchford.

Sir Bob said the opportunities in the transformation of The Bays Precinct create a unique legacy moment in the evolution of Sydney.

“This is a pleasingly open and transparent opportunity for Sydneysiders to take part in a consultation that will shape the future of their great City. It is superb - and correct - that the views, ideas and creativity of the people are to be given a prominent role in the process,” Sir Bob said.

UrbanGrowth NSW has held a range of briefings and workshops on the Call for Great Ideas, including workshops in Balmain and Leichhardt to offer local residents the assistance of an architect, urban planner and writer.

The process for submitting an idea involves writing a 400 word description of the idea along with 100 words detailing how the idea fits with the project’s objectives of providing jobs, housing, public spaces, ways to get around and great design. Drawings, sketches, images or graphics can also be submitted.

The Call for Great Ideas provides an opportunity for people from the community, from Greater Sydney and New South Wales, from industry and from academia to present innovative ideas for the transformation of four areas in The Bays Precinct: the Bays Waterfront Promenade; Bays Market District (including the Sydney Fish Market); White Bay Power Station; and White Bay Cruise Terminal.

The Call for Great Ideas closes on Monday, 20 July 2015.

For details visit

Members of the Independent Assessment Panel.

Sir Bob Parker

Sir Bob Parker served four terms as a Mayor, including two as Mayor of Christchurch City during the 2010 2011 earthquakes, one of New Zealand's deadliest and most catastrophic natural disasters. He won wide praise for his role, leadership and work in response to the quake that claimed 185 lives. He was recently knighted for his services to the disaster recovery. Sir Bob led and developed the post-earthquake design consultation 'share an idea', which was awarded the global Co-Creation Award, the first time this award had been granted outside of Europe. He was also Chair of the Greater Christchurch Urban Development Strategy and has worked on earthquake and sustainability issues with the United Nations, United States Armed Forces as well as governments in Nepal, Korea, Philippines, the UK and Australia.

Saul Eslake

One of Australia's most widely recognised economic analysts and commentators, Saul Eslake has more than 25 years experience as a financial markets economist. He has served as the chief economist at the Bank of America Merrill Lynch (Australia and New Zealand) and the Australia & New Zealand Banking Group (ANZ). Mr Eslake has held the respect of successive Governments, advising Howard, Rudd and Gillard administrations as well as the Kennett Government in Victoria. He has a keen interest in the arts having served on the Tasmanian Arts Advisory Board and the Board of the Australian Business Arts Foundation.

Dr Robert Lang

Dr Lang has had an impressive career in Government, serving as Parramatta City Council CEO and Sydney Harbour Foreshore Authority CEO. He is an adjunct Professor at the University of Western Sydney’s School of Business and has held a number of directorships in both energy companies and development authorities. Dr Lang was the chairman of the Place Leaders Association – a non-profit organisation passionate about creating great places in the community and he was a director of Parramasala, the Australian Festival of South Asian Arts. He has also served as Co-Chairman of the NSW Sustainability Advisory Council.

Sarah Hill

Sarah Hill is a an Adjunct Professor at the University of Technology Sydney in the Faculty of Design, Architecture and Building as well as a Director of Hill PDA, Australia’s leading firm of land economists, property valuers and planners. Previously Sarah worked as a Principal Planner in London where she developed and led the London Borough of Hackney (LBH) Major Projects Development Assessment Team. While working for the LBH Sarah created a new planning authority known as the London Olympic and Paralympic Joint Planning Authority that successfully assessed the planning applications for the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games and their legacy. In turn, Sarah advised the London Olympic Delivery Authority on planning, design and environmental matters.

Peter Poulet

Peter Poulet is the 23rd NSW Government Architect. He has more than 30 years’ experience in the public and private sectors and has worked and studied in Japan.

Peter specialises in design management and advocating for quality design and sustainable built outcomes. Projects designed by Peter have received major awards including the Horbury Hunt, the Blackett Award and a RAIA commendation for Public Building. As a practicing artist Peter exhibits regularly in Sydney and Melbourne.

Di Leeson

Dianne is an urban planner and former senior executive in the NSW Public Sector. She lead the master planning process for the Sydney Olympic Park precinct and has had key involvement in various Government renewal sites such as Green Square, Barangaroo, Newcastle City Centre and The Bays Precinct. Dianne was a member of the former Sydney Metropolitan Development Authority and chair of the Bays Precinct Task Force (2011/2012). Dianne continues to provide advice on major projects to both Government and the private sector.


Dr Simon Longstaff AO

Dr Longstaff’s distinguished career includes being named as one of AFR Boss True Leaders for the 21st century. He has been the Executive Director of The St James Ethics Centre for 24 years and was the inaugural President of The Australian Association for Professional and Applied Ethics. He is a Fellow of the World Economic Forum and an officer of the Order of Australia. Dr Longstaff is the co-curator of the Festival of Dangerous Ideas.