Plans to improve people’s experience of Circular Quay and reconnect it to the city crucial to Sydney’s future liveability.
Reconnecting Circular Quay to the city, improving public access to the harbour and creating more open spaces around the foreshore are all on the ‘to do’ list at this year’s UTS Zunz Lecture.
Sponsored by engineering consultants Arup, the ‘Re-imagining the City’s gateway’ event is part of the University of Technology’s Zunz annual lecture series aimed at stimulating high-quality public dialogue on the future of our city.
This year’s event marks the end of the month-long Sydney Opera House 40th birthday celebrations.
Lord Mayor Clover Moore said improving people’s experience of Circular Quay by reconnecting the harbour to the rest of the city was crucial to Sydney’s future liveability.
“The opportunity to reconnect Circular Quay to the rest of the city for millions of visitors is one of the greatest challenges, and opportunities, of our city’s future,” the Lord Mayor said.
“The harbourfront – as Jorn Utzon recognised so well – provides a natural focus for people, and Circular Quay has some of our city’s strongest cultural assets like the Sydney Opera House, the MCA, Customs House and the Museum of Sydney.
“Sadly it is being held back by mistakes of the past that cut it off from the rest of the city. At the moment Circular Quay is a congested space, made worse by the lack of clear way-finding and visible visitor information.
“The introduction of light rail and transformation of George Street provides a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to re-work Circular Quay as our foremost cultural hub, while also being the city’s grand entry point.
“I am keen to hear from the UTS Zunz lecture’s expert panel and look forward to beginning a conversation to help people imagine a better future for Circular Quay.”
The City of Sydney’s Sustainable Sydney 2030 vision proposes removing the Cahill Expressway to improve access and views to the water, as well as renewing the public square in front of Customs House with more spaces for people.
There are also plans for creating a cultural ribbon to better connect public art, museums, galleries, theatres and other creative institutions along the harbour foreshore.