Shaping Australian Cities: Driving Global Competitiveness Through Strategy and Design

The 10th International Urban Design Conference will be held at Surfers Paradise Marriott Resort & Spa, Gold Coast, Queensland from Monday 13 – Tuesday 14 November 2017. 

Australian cities
James Tuma

James Tuma, National Director – Design, will be joining us this year to discuss “Shaping Australian cities: Driving global competitiveness through strategy and design”.

What makes a city globally competitive? Where do Australian cities sit in the global context? How should we shape them?

Cities are human kind’s greatest achievement and challenge. Predictions indicate that by 2050 well over half of the world’s 5 billion people will live in cities. Investment in cities and real estate worldwide is estimated to more than double from 2012 to 2020. Cumulatively, cities globally represent the greatest opportunity to enact and effect change at a planetary scale.

This body of work considers the emerging language and strengths of cities and identifies ten strategic opportunities for Australian cities to address when it comes to their design and place in the world. This guidance is by no means exhaustive or definitive, however it aims to provide the foundation stones of creating a compelling national conversation about our shared urban future.

 This 10th International Urban Design Conference is an opportunity for design professionals to exchange ideas and experiences, to be creative and visionary, and to contribute to redesigning our urban futures.

Secure your spot for this year here.

Early Bird Registration Closing Soon!

You are invited to The 8th International Urban Design Conference, held at the Sofitel Brisbane from Monday 16 November to Wednesday 18 November 2015.

Early Bird registration for the Conference will close Friday 2 October so make sure you have registered and paid by close of business 2 October 2015.

In 2014, this event sold out so you are encouraged to register at your earliest convenience to secure your seat.

This years’ theme titled Empowering Change: Transformative Innovations and Projects will focus on inspirational changes in urban environments.  To view the conference program click here.

This years’ Conference streams to include:

  • Building inclusive multicultural cities
  • Eco cities
  • Health & urban design
  • Higher density urbanism
  • Spatial / temporal changes in Chinese cities
  • Rapid urban development in South East Asia, China & India
  • Balancing the quick and slow formation of cities
  • Using technology to change how cities work
  • How will big data change the future of cities?
  • Urban Design Practice

To secure your discounted delegate rate before early bird registration closes, please visit the conference website here.

If you have any questions about the event, please do not hesitate to contact the Conference Secretariat on +61 (07) 5502 2068 or email

The Fawkner Makes Strong Debut

The Urban Developer 10 September 2015.


Melbourne’s new $300 million development The Fawkner has already sold more than half its offerings in the last three months with interest predominantly by owner occupiers.

The 253-apartment development, designed by architecture and design studio KPDO, is positioned on the site of the former Fawkner Centre building overlooking Fawkner Park.

The Fawkner will feature upon completion a 24-hour concierge and  resident-only facilities including a porte-cochere entrance into the lobby, timber lined wine room with 96 wine cellars, private movie theatre, infinity swimming pool, gymnasium, sauna and steam room, play spaces for children, private dining areas and communal meeting spaces.

The ground floor will be extensively re-landscaped to create a garden enclave, while more gardens will be created on the podium level, all designed by OCULUS Landscape Architecture.

Construction of the development is scheduled to commence in late 2015 and scheduled for completion by early 2017.

Read the full article here.

World’s oldest living culture should be brought into 21st century

Article published in the Sydney Morning Herald – Business Day 9 May 2015 by Ross Larkin

Multi award-winning Aboriginal designer Alison Page says culturally meaningful Australian design is now more important than ever.

Alison Page Source Sydney Morning Herald
Alison Page Source Sydney Morning Herald

“Australia has the world’s oldest living culture,” she says. “We’ve got 40,000 years of pretty ingenious design, so Australian design is actually from the oldest designers in the world. But it needs to be brought into the 21st century. That’s the definition of what a living culture is all about. It doesn’t stay living hidden in books.”

Page, a descendant of the Walbanga​ and Wadi Wadi people of the Yuinnation, is considered a leading force in the Australian design scene at the forefront of contemporary Australian Aboriginal design.

She has founded an interior design studio, completed projects spanning interiors, public art, installations and film and was founding chief executive of the Saltwater Freshwater Arts Alliance.

“I feel compelled to do it as an Aboriginal woman,” she says. “I am 40, middle aged, I have a responsibility to strengthen our cultural values and pass them on to young people.”

Much of Page’s work has been in architecture and building design, which she says is the ideal format for instilling meaning into the built environment which surrounds us. “I realised that my heritage, which was really grounded in beautiful cultural values about sustainability and connection to country … the importance of storytelling and of family could all be communicated or expressed through this medium called architecture,” she says.

“There’s huge potential there for cultural narratives to come into our environment. These are the stories and values the world needs to hear now.”

Rather than constantly erecting buildings which have no meaning or artistry, Page says our built environment should be designed with story and purpose and injected with significance.

To read the full article please click here.