Green urban vision for Sydney Markets

Green urban vision for Sydney Markets

23 November 2018

When Sydney Markets moves from Flemington to the Aerotropolis in Western Sydney, the existing Flemington site could be transformed into a model of 21st Century urban renewal, says the Urban Taskforce.

Sydney Markets, originally based in Haymarket close to Darling Harbour, is one of the largest fresh fruit and vegetable wholesale markets in Australia. The markets relocated west to Flemington in 1975 to be closer to the then centre of Sydney at Parramatta.

Earlier this year, the Market’s management announced an agreement with the NSW Government to move to the proposed Aerotropolis in Western Sydney.

“With Sydney now planned to have three city centres the announcement that the markets will move further west to be part of the third city at the Aerotropolis completes their move to the areas of growth,” Urban Taskforce chief executive Chris Johnson said.

“The massive markets site at Flemington is an ideal opportunity for an urban redevelopment at the scale of a mini city.”

The design proposal by Sydney architect Tony Owen, dubbed Flemington 2036, includes a mix of elements needed for a sustainable future, including urban agriculture, employment, high density living, while retaining some of the site’s existing market uses.

Owen’s proposal includes the use of green roofs to promote communal agriculture and to help reduce the heat build-up on the site while capturing water runoff.

“Buildings are dripping in greenery and lower height buildings have green roofs that are used for agriculture that could include cows grazing and free-range chickens,” Johnson said.

Some 90 per cent of the site land surface will be devoted to parks, paddocks, and agricultural crops such as vegetables, grains, herbs, flowers and fruit orchards, supplying 30 per cent of residents’ needs, Owens estimates.

The plan locates the tallest buildings, up to 45 storeys high, near the highway and commercial areas with lower buildings near existing residential areas.

The site is well located between the Sydney CBD and the growing city of Parramatta and it has its own railway station.

“The whole community can live and work with 10,000 residents and 4,000 workers all coming together in a park like environment,” Chris Johnson said.

There is the option of providing a new station on the proposed Metro West line to further connect the site to jobs in Parramatta and in the Sydney CBD.

“The design highlights some of the challenges and possible solutions for the future; a future that will have to find solutions to the issues of population growth, density, sustainable living, reduced energy use and urban heat islands,” notes World Architecture Community.