Menu Close

Speaking with: Lucy Turnbull on the Greater Sydney Commission

Speaking with: Lucy Turnbull on the Greater Sydney Commission. CC BY-ND31.4 MB (download)

In late 2015, the Greater Sydney Commission was established to oversee metropolitan planning and development in Sydney. The commission is intended to function as a partnership between state and local governments, with both the power to create overarching planning proposals and the mandate to work with local governments on local planning controls.

NSW Premier Mike Baird has tasked the commission with delivering 680,000 new homes by 2031, with the aim of tackling the city’s unfolding housing affordability crisis.

In December, Lucy Turnbull was announced as the inaugural chief commissioner for the Greater Sydney Commission. In addition to a successful career in commercial law and investment banking, Turnbull has a history in local government – in 2003 she became the first female lord mayor of Sydney – and is the author of the 1999 book Sydney: Biography of a City. Since 2010 she has been the deputy chair of the Coalition of Australian Governments’ City Expert Advisory Panel.

Dallas Rogers spoke with Lucy Turnbull on the establishment of the Greater Sydney Commission, its structure, plans and mandate from the premier, as well as criticism from some urban planning experts that the commission is an undemocratic “top-down” approach to development.

Subscribe to The Conversation’s Speaking With podcasts on iTunes, or follow on Tunein Radio.

Music from Free Music Archive: Liquor Files - Treacle by Blue Dot Sessions.

Further reading:

“Participatory, technocratic and neoliberal planning: an untenable planning governance ménage à trois” by Laura Schatz and Dallas Rogers in Australian Planner.

“Monitory Democracy as Citizen-driven Participatory Planning: The Urban Politics of Redwatch in Sydney” by Dallas Rogers in Urban Policy and Research.

Want to write?

Write an article and join a growing community of more than 175,100 academics and researchers from 4,818 institutions.

Register now