The Urban Taskforce has released draft plans from three Sydney architects that draw the future for the city of Sydney in 2050.

Architects Richard Francis-Jones (fjmt), James Fitzpatrick (Fitzpatrick+Partners) and Philip Vivian (Bates Smart) were briefed by The Urban Taskforce to depict a future for Sydney that considers a mixed use metropolitan centre housing tens of thousands residents, as well as an increased workforce connected to global finance and consulting services.

They were also encouraged to include exciting cafes, restraints, public spaces, cultural facilities and a world class public transport system based on a metro network.

“Behind these three visions is a question of where we all see Sydney into the future. These designs clearly support strong growth in Sydney as a leading city in the Asia Pacific region. They see Sydney as a place of confidence in the future and as a place that supports and urban lifestyle,” says The Urban

“Sydney’s future will not be advanced if we think of ourselves only as small villages. We must have big visions for the future so that Sydney plays an increasing leadership role as one of the world’s leading cities.”

The plans:

Symbiotic City, Francis-Jones Morehen Thorp (fjmt)

Architect Richard Francis-Jones proposes new green parks and new high-rise developments within solar access planes. Image: Urban Taskforce

The FJMT design considers a rich green network of public open space as enabling the growth of the city.

“For the City to grow, so too must its public open and green space. An extended rich green network of public open space coupled with increases in building heights, can create a balance of open space and density that makes a great City,” reads the report from FJMT.

Key features of the plan include an extended and enhanced Prince Alfred Park supporting the growth in the south, a suspended green deck over the Harbour Bridge, and a green parkland deck above the Bradfield Highway.

All green spaces are designed in accordance to the winter sun access planes incorporated from new skyscraper developments.

Sydney 2050: a City of Villages, Fitzpatrick + Partners

James Fitzpatrick's design features a series of centres including North Sydney, Glebe Island, Central Station and Woolloomooloo. Image: Urban Taskforce

The Fitzpatrick + Partners plan responds to what they call the constrained elements of Sydney city, which includes its parklands, water and lack of interlinking transport:

“To grow we must intensify what we already have, and put under even more pressure what we hold to be precious. This is not an option, so we must simply jump these blockages to the spaces beyond. Resolving our transportation model is therefore our pathway to the future. Sydney is a city of villages.”

Key features of the plan include the creation of six major villages linked by metro, bike and pedestrian access links and green landscape fingers.

The city villages include: North Sydney: Services Harbour City: Pedestrian White Bay: Finance sector Woolloomooloo: Creative The Old City: Corporate Central Station: Interchange

Sydney 2050, Bates Smart.

“By 2050 Sydney will need a new metro system that crosses the harbour and funding for this could come from the development of super tall towers around the proposed new metro stations according to a vision for Sydney’s future created by Philip Vivian of architectural firm Bates Smart," says Chris Johnson, CEO of the Urban Taskforce 

The Bates Smart design focusses on an upgrade to Sydney’s inner ring metro system and the creation of ‘super-tall’ buildings within 200 metres of the Metro station in the city centre.

The design acknowledges the significance of sunlight to public spaces but also suggests that Sydney needs to build up for economic growth and reconsider the current building height constraints

“Sunlight to public spaces and parks is important, however we believe this needs to be balanced with the need for economic development. Thus we are proposing a relaxation of the prohibition of overshadowing, by allowing a defined quantum of 2 hours of shadow,” stated the firm.

The relaxed building height laws will be applicable at Central Station, Town Hall, Museum, St James, Wynyard, Circular Quay, Milsons Point and North Sydney.

The ‘super-tall’ buildings proposed by Bates Smart are at least 35 per cent taller than their current context – a move firm believes will ensure a varied skyline.

The plans were published in the Urban Taskforce’s ‘Urban Ideas’ online magazine that is available here:

You can view the individual architect's plans in pdf format below: