|ATP Sydney 1998|
In 2002 design students and staff from the "new" Bauhaus Dessau in Germany, visited Sydney and undertook a planning exercise for the area now known as the bays precinct. They were interested in the role of computers and telecommunications in the city, so I gave them a talk on Canberra's fibre optic broadband system entitled Canberra: Encircled by Light. As a footnote to this I proposed reusing the old Canberra power-station as a hi-tech centre.
The results of the Bauhaus study were published in 2003, as the book "Serve City: Interactive urbanism" by Neil Leach, Wilfried Hackenbroich and Regina Sonnabend, available in the libraries of the University of Sydney and Western Sydney and from Amazon.com.
Sydney hi-tech company Atlassian have suggested that the existing Australian Technology Park (ATP) which is in a repurposed railways workshop in Redfern would be more more viable. It does seem odd that the NSW government would be proposing establishing a new tech park, when they already have one languishing on the other side of the city.
In my closing address to the 1998 Information Industry Outlook Conference, I used the ATP to illustrate how Australia could create a cultured image to market its information industries. Rather than Silicon Valley, I suggested that Australia should model its hi-tech start-up strategy on Cambridge (England) and the so-called "Cambridge phenomenon".
An area which is growing organically into a hi-tech center is around UTS in Ultimo. This has the new UTS Innovation Building and the adjacent Fishburners Co-working Space.