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Rogers beats Foster to £3bn Barangaroo development for Sydney

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Head-to-head contest for the 22ha Barangaroo development in Sydney ends amid complaints from local architects

Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners, working with Lend Lease, saw off Foster + Partners, teamed up with developers Brookfield, in the competition to oversee the redevelopment of the A$6bn (£3.3bn) former industrial and shipping site.

Plans for the plot, which was previously known as East Darling Harbour, include parks, a ‘great city boulevard’, new ferry terminal, cultural centre, offices and up to 1,500 new homes.

Richard Rogers commented: ‘It is four years since I was first introduced to Barangaroo. Since that time I have become enchanted and captivated with Sydney; the beauty of its landscape, the quality of urbanism and its lifestyle.

‘The composed architectural massing of Barangaroo’s contemporary and inclusive buildings will be juxtaposed with the adjacent natural headland and Northern Cove. The natural landscape of Sydney Harbour will be complimented by these dynamic and sculptural forms on the cities western corner, and together with the public waterfront places and promenade will all form a new landmark for the city.

‘Our master plan for Barangaroo is arranged as a fan of buildings that will allow the western corner of the city to breathe. The fan creates spaces and views opening outward to the west. Sunlight will penetrate deep into the squares and laneways that will reconnect the city to its western waterfront and a new natural headland.’

The precinct’s commitment to sustainability includes: ‘being water positive, producing more water than it uses; being carbon neutral, generating more renewable energy than it uses; and generating zero waste, by reducing, reusing and recycling more waste than the precinct will generate.’

Controversially, the plan will see the construction of a 150m peninsula extending into the harbour as a base for a 230m tall hotel.

Architect Philip Thalis, who won the original design competition to redevelop East Darling Harbour, said the development was ‘privatising the harbour’ and compared it to the architecture of Dubai.

‘It’s a catastrophic mistake for Sydney… It’s the worst of Dubai “look at me” architecture,’ Thalis told the Sydney Morning Herald.

Peter Webber, emeritus professor of architecture at the University of Sydney, added: ‘There’s not really any excuse for intruding on publicly owned water. The precedent that sets is not a very good one.’

Mike Collins, Chairman of the Barangaroo Delivery Authority, said: ‘We consider this plan to be outstanding, and are confident that it will reinvigorate and add new life to our city, reinforcing our position as a global financial hub in the Asia Pacific and creating wonderful new public waterfront places for the people of Sydney.’


Should a 150m peninsula be allowed to extend into the harbour as a base for a 230m tall hotel?

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Readers' comments (1)

  • British Design leading the world - great shame its only half appreciated at home - prince Charles should be ashamed.

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