Official Launch of the Cities Leadership Institute

After near twelve months of supporting, advising and partnering with cities across the country, we paused to officially launch the Cities Leadership Institute.

Above: John Alexander OAM, MP

On 21 September, 2017 John Alexander OAM, MP and the Lord Mayor of Newcastle Clr Nuatali Nelmes together with over 60 key stakeholders in industry, academia, and all levels of government gathered to share city stories, learnings and progress.

Connectivity, collaboration and the importance of strategic planning marked the evening’s key themes.

Sharing his insights as Chair of the Standing Committee on Infrastructure, Transport and Cities, Mr Alexander spoke on the importance of masterplanning infrastructure and surrounding land use to increase fairness in our cities and reduce uncertainty in business. Alignment between levels of government is imperative to avoid the ad hoc planning that befalls many of our cities.

Left-Right: Tim Askew, City of Newcastle; Sandy Burgoyne, Citizen Cities; Tim Farrell, Prime Minister and Cabinet, Cities Division; Tim Hurst, Office of Local Government

“As you try to densify your cities in a planned way, and create a strategic decentralisation and revitalisation of regional areas…you are looking at a plan of growth for decades and decade to come,” Mr Alexander said.

As a regional center and aspiring global city, Mr Alexander’s words resonated with the City of Newcastle - a long time member and supporter of the Institute.

Newcastle’s Lord Mayor spoke proudly about her city’s transformation and how the Institute’s independent expertise has helped the community and Councillors set a plan and vision for the future.

Left to Right: Lord Mayor of Newcastle Clr Nuatali Nelmes; Michael Cassel, Hunter Development Corporation; Katherine O'Regan, Cities Leadership Institute

Lord Mayor Nelmes emphasized that “there is no other regional city in this country…that is undergoing the type of change we’re going through at the moment. The contributing factor is a significant amount of government investment and collaboration between all agencies as well as a demand for private investment in Newcastle.”

Innovation, collaboration and technology are core to Newcastle’s growth plan. The city’s smart city strategy is the product of a partnership between Council, State government and the University of Newcastle. Current initiatives include a roll out of smart poles across the city, a research incubator hub and a ‘living lab’ in the heart of the CBD with the aim of turning the city into a live testbed for autonomous vehicles.

We were honoured that the newly elected Mayor of Hornsby Shire Council Clr Philip Ruddock and Mayor of Canada Bay Clr Angelo Tsirekas attended our launch as did former Mayor of Waverley Council Clr Sally Betts and Dr Geoff Lee, Member for Parramatta. The Cities Leadership Institute members Blacktown City council and Woollahra Municipal Council were also represented.

Left to Right: Dr (Geoff) Lee, Member for Parramatta; Mayor of Hornsby Shire Council Clr Philip Ruddock

We extend our special thanks to Senator Arthur Sinodinos AO who was unfortunately not able to join us due to illness. The Senator has been a valued supported of the Cities Leadership Institute and we wish him well for a speedy recovery.

View more photos here.

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Level 23, 45 Clarence Street

Sydney, NSW 2000, Australia

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