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Encompassing 95 hectares of mostly government-owned land and 94 hectares of harbour waterways, The Bays Precinct includes many unique areas that serve different communities, are valued differently by these communities and offer different opportunities for transformation. For this reason, we’re taking a ‘Destination approach’ to the transformation, where ‘Destination’ describes an area of The Bays Precinct with a distinct context and ambition.

Much of the schedule is based on logistics – for example, Glebe Island is a longer-term Destination, as it will be used as the temporary site of the Sydney Exhibition Centre until around 2017. While the Sydney Fish Market, which will be the centrepiece of the Bays Market District, is ready for an immediate refresh.

As The Bays Precinct Urban Transformation Program evolves, it may become necessary to expand the program area to take advantage of natural synergies and further development opportunities, subject to detailed stakeholder engagement.



A number of investigations and studies are underway to inform a high level planning framework to guide the progressive transformation of The Bays Precinct.

The Bays Planning Framework will establish the overarching land use strategy for all The Bays Precinct’s Destinations.

This framework will define the:

  • character of the Precinct
  • land use and open space
  • infrastructure
  • community facilities
  • transport and mobility
  • housing scenarios.

It will be informed by a series of technical studies including those detailed below, and will take into account the opportunities and constraints for the whole of The Bays Precinct.

This integrated planning approach will set a baseline and provide a sound evidence base for decisions about different land uses and the built environment, including public spaces. It is being carried out in parallel with more detailed planning and procurement processes for the four immediate priority Destinations, and will be used to inform their subsequent Urban Design Framework and spatial master plans.

View The Bays Precinct Planning and Urban Design Strategic Framework Process within the Transformation Plan.


Precinct wide technical studies underway

  • The Bays Precinct Comprehensive Transport and Mobility Plan – this Plan will be based on the idea of the connected city, where there are short distances between housing, workplaces and public transport. Bike paths, walkways, water access, public spaces, public buildings and commercial facilities will all be considered. Solutions will be based on an integrated transport system that is consistent with the staged rollout of the priority Destinations. This Plan is being prepared by Transport for NSW and UrbanGrowth NSW*.
  • The Bays Working Harbour Study – will identify and review the numerous elements of Sydney’s ‘working harbour’ that are currently located within The Bays Precinct. It will consider maritime economic opportunities and challenges, and provide a range of scenarios for the retention, relocation or co-location of these important activities both within The Bays Precinct and potentially throughout Sydney Harbour.
  • The Bays Precinct Housing Diversity and Affordability Strategy – will consider local household demand, housing stock supply, income data and household projections*. It will provide recommendations on how much and what kind of housing types could be located within The Bays Precinct. .
  • Open space and community facilities – Planning for open space and facilities in The Bays Precinct will consider the current, future, regional and visitor community needs and aspirations. This study will adopt a methodology that identifies existing community needs, current provision and gaps within the Precinct and the surrounding area. It will identify a high level strategy for the staged delivery of these critical community needs as part of the transformation of The Bays Precinct*.

* Note: These technical studies will be based on population projections and participation trends which will be identified in The Bays Planning Framework.

Next steps

  • Work on the draft Bays Planning Framework has commenced. The Framework will consider all the feedback received to date including through the Bays International Summit, the Sydneysiders Summit and Leadership Forums, feedback on the Transforming City Living: The Bays Precinct Discussion Paper and The Call for Great Ideas. It will be informed by the technical studies detailed above, and is expected to be completed in 2016.
  • Read Bays Precinct-wide technical studies as they are completed and released, where possible in the Document Library.