21 December 2010 – ASPECT Studios’ Pirrama Park project was the major winner at this year’s Australian Institute of Architects NSW awards.

Other winning projects included The Village at Balgowlah, the Clarence River Way masterplan, the Sydney Park North West precinct and the Chinatown Public Domain Plan.

Jury chair Gay Williamson said the work featured in the awards demonstrated across all the categories, that Australian Landscape Architects demonstrated a range of admirable qualities.

She said the work demonstrated landscape architects were, “collaborative, actively putting together design and research teams, seeking the broadest input from stakeholders and working alongside, rather than ‘to’ the clients.

“The jury was consistently struck by the integration and partnership of thought and effort whether it was in the design of a pocket park, a temporary art installation or a regional town plan,” Ms Williamson said.

The works also showed lateral thinking, new “wisdom” and the willingness to embrace the latest technology.

“I am sure that the jury would agree with me that after considering all the entries, the now disparaging phrase of ‘business as usual’, could never apply,” Ms Williamson said.

Ms Williamson also called for a new award for concept plans or master plans “so that we are not trying to assess them under the broader planning criteria”.

She said the profession was “winning back the ‘turf’ that is rightly ours in site planning and broader urban and regional planning and we should differentiate between these.  More importantly we should acknowledge the brilliant work that is happening in these spheres and encourage it.”

Jury members included Kerry Colquhoun, James Gant, Richard Johnson, Kirstyen Stephen, Judy van Gelderen and Tina Perinotto (of The Fifth Estate).

Medal for Landscape Architecture – Pirrama Park
A robust and gracious urban project, Pirrama Park is another ‘jewel’ in the Sydney of City’s network of harbour side public parks. Demonstrating excellence in spatial design, materiality, planting and sustainability, the landscape architects have skilfully realised the site’s maritime, Industrial, social and cultural history. The platforms left from its industrial use and the palette of materials – concrete, sand, stone, gravel and reed beds – create spaces providing a myriad of opportunities and adventures for visitors to the park.

Award for Excellence in Design – Sydney Park North West Precinct
There is much that is notable about the North West Sydney Park project: the innovative solutions to problematic site conditions, the ordering of space, the integration of play structures and its environmental sensitivity.  However, what is perhaps most impressive is this park clearly holds a great deal of delight for its many users. The architects have transformed what was nebulous open grassy space and mass plantings, into an engaging and experientially rich place.

Award in Residential Design – The Village, Balgowlah
This residential development, which also includes retail and commercial uses, has replaced a rundown local centre on Sydney’s Northern Beaches and provided a new community hub. The design team have successfully differentiated between public and private space without compromising on accessibility or adding unnecessary clutter. Plant species were selected for their appropriateness to the site and to the microclimates created by the architecture and the planting in the podium garden is so successful, visitors are often unaware they are strolling over a shopping centre and carpark.

Urban Design Award for Excellence – Chinatown Public Domain Plan
The Chinatown Public Domain Plan is a well researched, clearly articulated and well presented strategy informed by a highly effective community engagement process. Completion of this vision will see a fundamental reconfiguration of the public domain creating a diverse yet distinctive network of public spaces throughout Chinatown. This plan will establish a new level of prosperity for Chinatown and in itself establishes a new benchmark for such urban design studies.

AILA NSW Awards 2010 winners

  • Medal for Landscape Architecture – Pirrama Park
    ASPECT Studios, Hill Thalis Architecture + Urban Projects, CAB Consulting and The City of Sydney


  • Award for Excellence – Sydney Park North West Precinct
    JMD Design and the City of Sydney
  • Award – Seven Metre Bar
    Adrian McGregor in partnership with Richard Goodwin and Russell Lowe
  • Award – ‘The Meeting Place’ – Laneways: By George! Hidden Networks
    ASPECT Studios, Derlot Studio, Herbert & Mason
  • Award – Railway Park
    Jane Irwin Landscape Architecture withMcGregor Westlake Architecture
  • Award – Regatta Walk Foreshore Reserve Toronto
    Pod Landscape Architecture

Residential design

  • Award – The Village, Balgowlah
    OCULUS Landscape Architecture Urban Design


  • Award for Excellence – Clarence River Way Masterplan
    CLOUSTON Associates
  • Award – Green Street
    Turf Design Studio and Housing NSW

Land Management

  • Award – Green and Golden Bell Frog Habitat in Edgewood Estate, Woonona
    Taylor Brammer Landscape Architects

Research and Communication

  • Award – Climate Design: Design and Planning for the Age of Climate Change
    AECOM Australia


  • Award – LESS_ Local-area Envisioning and Sustainability scoring System
  • Award – www.callanparkyourplan.com.au
    McGregor Coxall

Special awards

  • Urban Design Award for Excellence – Chinatown Public Domain Plan
    Spackman Mossop Michaels in collaboration with the City of Sydney
  • Future Leaders Graduate Award
    Lauren Nissen
  • Future Leaders Student Award
    First – Timothy Vyse
    Second – Andre Hon
  • NSW Planning Minister’s Sydney Greenspace Award – Sydney Park North West Precinct
    The City of Sydney and JMD Design
  • RTA Award for Excellence in Landscape Architecture On Road Transport Infrastructre Projects –
    Great Western Highway Upgrade Leura to Katoomba
    Spackman Mossop Michaels
  • President’s Award
    Clover Moore MP, Lord Mayor of Sydney

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