Sydney’s Three Cities Policy Needs a Vision For Robust Growth

The three cities of Sydney, the Harbour City, the River City and the Parkland City will need a vision to have robust growth over the next 20 to 30 years, says the Urban Taskforce.


“With concerns being expressed across Sydney’s suburbs, that medium density could destroy the character of the detached house suburbs, it would seem that major development should occur in Sydney’s three cities.” says Urban Taskforce CEO Chris Johnson. “The Urban Taskforce has developed 20 to 30 year visions for the three cities of the Harbour City, the River City and the Parkland City at the Aerotropolis, to give a futuristic feel for how Sydney’s centres could look from 2040 onwards.”


“We were asked to produce these visions by the Sunday Telegraph and the Daily Telegraph so that their readers could get a glimpse of the future form of the three cities. To develop the visions, the Urban Taskforce has worked with Sydney 3D modelling firm Arterra Interactive, Sydney architects LAVA who provided futuristic building forms, and architects Bates Smart who provided a base form for growth around Circular Quay.”


“The Urban Taskforce supports the Greater Sydney Commission’s approach to the three cities, but we are concerned that there seems to be a very suburban approach to Sydney’s character that is being promoted particularly in relation to local character. The best way to preserve local character is to ensure that most new development occurs in more urban locations in city centres and around railway stations. So our visions for Sydney’s three cities are deliberately robust with significant height and the incorporation of greenery within the urban cores.”


“It is good to see that the Lord Mayor of Parramatta, Andrew Wilson, is a supporter of a robust city for Parramatta, with building forms that are not just boxes. And that Sam Sangster, the CEO of the Aerotropolis Authority supports the futuristic vision for the Aerotropolis while expressing some concerns about the heights illustrated. For the Harbour City, Sydney Lord Mayor, Clover Moore, supports more height but is concerned that her plans are being held up by the state government.”


“An essential part of the Urban Taskforce vision for the three cities is that they are connected by fast rail and that they work as a connected economic system. Cities around the world are now becoming polycentric networks of economic power, where urban centres with quality jobs, retail and urban living become cosmopolitan hubs for local communities.”


Here are futuristic and current views of the three major cities for Sydney.


Harbour City of Sydney’s CBD (2040-50)

Harbour City of Sydney’s CBD (2019)


Western Parkland City – Aerotropolis (2040-50)


Western Parkland City – Aerotropolis (2019)

Central River City of Parramatta (2019)


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