The NSW Government Architect Peter Poulet has left the position after being appointed as the new Central City District Commissioner for the Greater Sydney Commission.
Deputy government architect Olivia Hyde will be the acting Government Architect while a recruitment process is undertaken.
Chris Johnson, CEO of the Urban Taskforce, expressed concern hat “there seem to be a number of senior executives leaving the Department of Planning and Environment at a crucial time in the growth of the state’s cities”.
He said that Mr Poulet has successfully managed the transition of the role from one of designing buildings to one of setting the framework for the quality of buildings and their urban setting.
“Peter Poulet has set policies and produced guides and systems that champion design quality at a time when the community has raised concerns about increasing density in urban areas. He has also chaired the Urban Taskforce Development Excellence Awards jury and demonstrated a willingness to work with the industry. We thank Peter for his contribution the New South Wales.”
“The development industry needs stability and strong leadership in planning particularly with the current down turn in home prices and in housing approval numbers. The recent government back downs on key policies related to town houses, planning policies in Ryde and on the planned precincts on the Sydenham to Bankstown line also indicate a softening in support for development.”
“There are clearly important roles in the Central District of Greater Sydney but there are also opportunities for someone of Peter Poulet’s experience to develop design quality across Greater Sydney generally and the Urban Taskforce would support this.”
“The Urban Taskforce encourages the NSW Government to ensure that the tradition of the NSW Government Architect continues particularly as an advocate for the quality design of greater urban density as populations increase.”