Four themed walking architectural tours designed to explore different facets of the Chippendale creative precinct are expected to be a major highlight of the upcoming Sydney Architecture Festival. The four-day festival runs from Friday 30 September until Monday 3 October with the walking tours scheduled from Saturday 1 October.

Led by Culture Scouts, the ticketed architectural tours will reveal little-known stories about the creative precinct of Chippendale, covering history, art, architecture and sustainable living. The four tours will be focused on sustainability; art gallery architecture; and an exploration of influential architectural buildings in the region including Central Park and the Indigo Slam residence by Smart Design Studio.

For a decade the Sydney Architecture Festival has celebrated design, architecture and the built environment through events, talks, tours and exhibitions. In 2016 the four-day festival will feature a global address by Indy Johar, director of WikiHouse and co-founder of UK-based practice Architecture 00.

The walking architectural tours in detail:

Old to New Chippendale: Saturday 1 October, 10am – 12pm

This guided tour will focus on the history of Chippendale, dating from the time when William Chippendale was granted 95 acres for farming in 1819 until the present day. Participants will learn about how an impoverished industrial suburb for most of the 19th and 20th centuries was revitalised in recent decades, resulting in the exciting and eclectic enclave of today. This tour visits buildings of all phases of this fascinating suburb, including the early 19th century workers' housing, the former Kent Brewery, Strickland Building and Central Park. 

Hot to Cool in the City: Saturday 1 October, 1pm – 3pm

Tour participants will hear some of the stories that make Chippendale unique, particularly how this suburb is taking active measures towards sustainable, green living. Starting with a tour of the adaptive reuse of The Old Clare Hotel by Tonkin Zulaikha Greer, along with an exploration of the old brewery, this tour will also include a visit to Sydney’s Sustainable House created by the resident Michael Mobbs. This off-grid home has solar panels providing electricity and running water sourced from inbuilt rainwater tanks. 

Art Gallery Architecture: Sunday 2 October, 10am – 12pm

Covering art and architecture, this tour takes in local galleries including Gallerie Pompom, Tiny Tailor Gallery, Wellington Street Projects and White Rabbit Gallery. Participants will explore the architecture of these commercial, not-for-profit, artist-run and private collection art spaces, and learn how this has contributed to their development and story. 

Influencers Tour: Monday 3 October, 10am – 12pm

Tour participants will be taken to several major architectural developments throughout Chippendale that have influenced architecture across Australia. Participants will be able to inspect first-hand several of these developments, including the green-clad Central Park, a tri-generation power plant and Indigo Slam, a piece of ‘inhabitable sculpture’ by Smart Design Studio.