City of Sydney
Get City of Sydney essential facts below. View Videos or join the City of Sydney discussion. Add City of Sydney to your topic list for future reference or share this resource on social media.
City of Sydney

The City of Sydney is the local government area covering the Sydney central business district and surrounding inner city suburbs of the greater metropolitan area of Sydney, New South Wales, Australia. Established by Act of Parliament in 1842, the City of Sydney is the oldest, and the oldest-surviving, local government authority in New South Wales, and the second-oldest in Australia, with only the City of Adelaide being older by two years.

Given its prominent position, historically, geographically, economically and socially, the City of Sydney has long been a source of political interest and intrigue. As a result of this, the boundaries, constitution and legal basis of the council has changed many times throughout its history, often to suit the governing party of the State of New South Wales. The City of Sydney is currently governed under the City of Sydney Act, 1988, which defines and limits the powers, election method, constitution and boundaries of the council area. On 6 February 2004, the former local government area of the City of South Sydney, which itself had been created in 1989 from areas formerly part of the City of Sydney (including Alexandria, Darlington, Erskineville, Newtown and Redfern), was formally merged into the City of Sydney and the current city boundaries date from this merger.

The leader of the City of Sydney is known as the Lord Mayor of Sydney, currently held since 27 March 2004 by Clover Moore, who also served concurrently as the state Member of Parliament for Sydney and Bligh from 1988 to 2012.

Suburbs and localities in the local government area

Suburbs within or partially within the City of Sydney are:

Localities in the City of Sydney are:


Lower George Street, Sydney in about 1828
The 1996 redesign of the City of Sydney coat of arms
City Council chambers, Sydney, 1840s

The name Sydney comes from "Sydney Cove" which is where the English Governor (later Admiral) Arthur Phillip established the first settlement, after arriving with the First Fleet. On 26 January 1788, he named it after Thomas Townshend, 1st Viscount Sydney, who was the home secretary at the time, and the man responsible for the plan for the convict colony in Australia.

The "City of Sydney" was established on 20 July 1842[3] by the Corporation Act which encompasses present-day Woolloomooloo, Surry Hills, Chippendale and Pyrmont, an area of 11.65 km². There were six wards established by boundary posts. These wards were: Gipps, Brisbane, Macquarie, Bourke, Cook and Phillip. A boundary post still exists in front of Sydney Square.

The boundaries of the City of Sydney have changed fairly regularly since 1900. The bankrupt Municipality of Camperdown was merged with the city in 1909. As a result of the Local Government (Areas) Act 1948, the municipalities of Alexandria, Darlington, Erskineville, Newtown, Redfern, The Glebe, Waterloo, and Paddington were added to the City. In 1968 the boundaries were changed and many of these suburbs moved to be part of a new municipality of South Sydney. South Sydney was brought back into the city in 1982, but became separate again under the City of Sydney Act of 1988 and then became smaller than its original size at 6.19 km². It grew again in February 2004 with the merger of the two council areas, and now has a population of approximately 170,000 people.

These changes in boundaries have often resulted in control of the council by the governing party in the Parliament of New South Wales at the time; the Labor Party often sought to have traditional working-class suburbs like Redfern, Erskineville, Alexandria and Waterloo included in the council area, and the Liberal Party and its predecessors often desired a smaller council area focused on inner-Sydney or a limited/broader voting franchise. A 1987 re-organisation initiated by a Labor state government and completed in 1989 under a Liberal Coalition government saw the City of Sydney split again, with southern suburbs forming the City of South Sydney, a moved that advantaged the government of the day, as the southern suburbs now in South Sydney Council had traditionally voted Labor.[4][5]

In 2004, the Labor state Government undid this change, again merging the councils of the City of Sydney and the South Sydney Council. Critics claimed that this was performed with the intention of creating a "super-council" which would be under the control of Labor, which also controlled the NSW Government. Subsequent to this merger, an election took place on 27 March 2004 which resulted in the independent candidate Clover Moore defeating the high-profile Labor candidate, former federal minister Michael Lee and winning the position of Lord Mayor.[4]

Boundary changes


At the 2016 Census, there were 208,374 people in the Sydney local government area, of these 51.8% were male and 48.2% were female. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people made up 1.2% of the population. The median age of people in the City of Sydney was 32 years. Children aged 0 - 14 years made up 6.7% of the population and people aged 65 years and over made up 8.2% of the population. Of people in the area aged 15 years and over, 25.7% were married and 9.1% were either divorced or separated.[1]

Population growth in the City of Sydney between the 2006 Census and the 2011 Census was 4.57%; with a significant increase of 22.93% between 2011 and 2016. When compared with total population growth of Australia of 8.81% between 2011 and 2016, population growth in the Sydney local government area was almost triple the national average.[1] The median weekly income for residents within the City of Sydney was just under 1.5 times the national average.[1][6]

The proportion of dwellings in the City of Sydney that are apartments or units is 77.1%, which is substantially different from the Australian average of 13.1%. The proportion of residents in the Sydney local government area that claimed Australian ancestry was approximately one-quarter the national average.[1]

Selected historical census data for Sydney local government area
Census year 1996[7] a 2001[8][9] b 2006[10] 2011[6] 2016[1]
Population Estimated residents on census night 87,874 124,512 156,571 169,505 208,374
LGA rank in terms of size within New South Wales 10th Increase8th
% of New South Wales population 1.97% Increase 2.39% Increase 2.45% Increase 2.79%
% of Australian population 0.49% Increase 0.66% Increase 0.79% Steady 0.79% Increase 0.89%
Estimated ATSI population on census night 2,051 1,982 2,175 2,413
% of ATSI population to residents 1.6% Decrease 1.3% Steady 1.3% Decrease 1.2%
Cultural and language diversity
top responses
English 19.3% Decrease 18.1%
Chinese 9.7% Increase 13.4%
Australian 13.9% Decrease 11.9%
Irish 8.5% Decrease 8.0%
Scottish 5.8% Decrease 5.3%
top responses
(other than English)
Mandarin 3.7% Increase 5.1% Increase 9.9%
Thai n/c Increase 2.1% Increase 3.2%
Cantonese 3.3% Decrease 3.2% Decrease 2.9%
Indonesian  1.7% Increase 1.9% Increase 2.2%
Spanish n/r n/r n/r n/r Increase 1.7%
Religious affiliation
Religious affiliation,
top responses
No religion, so described 26.7% Decrease 21.9% Increase 23.7% Increase 33.6% Increase 43.2%
Religious affiliation not stated n/r n/r n/r n/r Increase 15.8%
Catholic 23.6% Decrease 20.9% Decrease 18.3% Increase 19.0% Decrease 15.4%
Buddhism 2.9% Increase 5.0% Increase 5.2% Increase 6.5% Increase 7.0%
Anglican 14.7% Decrease 12.2% Decrease 10.0% Decrease 9.0% Decrease 5.8%
Median weekly incomes
Personal income Median weekly personal income A$717 A$888 A$953
% of Australian median income 153.9% Steady 153.9% Decrease 144.0%
Family income Median weekly family income A$1,204 A$2,273 $A2,524
% of Australian median income 117.2% Increase 153.5% Decrease 145.6%
Household income Median weekly household income A$1,819 A$1,639 A$1,926
% of Australian median income 105.9% Increase 132.8% Increase 133.9%
Dwelling structure
Dwelling type Separate house 2.7% Increase 4.9% Decrease 4.2% Decrease 2.0%
Semi-detached, terrace or townhouse 23.2% Decrease 20.2% Increase 21.2% Decrease 19.7%
Flat or apartment 71.2% Increase 73.7% Decrease 73.6% Increase 77.1%
^a  1996 Census figures refer to the City of Sydney prior to its merger with the City of South Sydney.
^b  2001 Census data comprise the sum of the former South Sydney and the former Sydney local government areas.


The Sydney Town Hall, seat of the City Council
Lord Mayor Term Notes
Lord Mayor Clover Moore 27 March 2004 - date MP for Sydney and Bligh 1988-2012[11][12]
Deputy Lord Mayor Jess Scully 9 September 2019 - date [13]
Chief Executive Officer Term Notes
Monica Barone 7 August 2006 - present [14]

Current composition and election method

Sydney City Council is composed of ten Councillors, including the Lord Mayor, for a fixed four-year term of office. The Lord Mayor is directly elected while the nine other Councillors are elected proportionally. The Deputy Lord Mayor is elected annually by the councillors. The most recent election was held on 10 September 2016, and the makeup of the Council, including the Lord Mayor, is as follows:[15]

Party Councillors
  Clover Moore Independent Team 5
  Liberal Party of Australia 2
  Australian Labor Party 1
  Sydney Matters Independent Team 1
  Independent 1
Total 10

The current Council, elected in 2016, in order of election, is:[15]

Lord Mayor Party Notes
  Clover Moore Clover Moore Independents Lord Mayor, 2004-date
Councillor Party Notes
  Kerryn Phelps Independent Deputy Lord Mayor, 2016-2017; Clover Moore Independent until 27 June 2017
  Christine Forster Liberal
  Linda Scott Labor Deputy Lord Mayor, 2018-2019[16]
  Philip Thalis Clover Moore Independents
  Jess Scully Clover Moore Independents Deputy Lord Mayor, 2019-date[13]
  Robert Kok Clover Moore Independents
  Jess Miller Clover Moore Independents Deputy Lord Mayor, 2017-2018[17]
  Craig Chung Liberal City of Ryde Councillor, 2012-2016
  Angela Vithoulkas Sydney Matters

Policies, services and initiatives


The City of Sydney has adopted various strategies and practices as climate change has become a major issue in Australia. Alarmingly, Australia's greenhouse gas emissions are some of the highest in the world per capita which has prompted a high level of concern. Thus, strategies have been implemented by the City of Sydney since the 2000s to reduce car pollution by encouraging mass and public transit[18] and introducing a fleet of 10 new Nissan LEAF electric cars, the largest order of the pollution-free vehicle in Australia.[19] Electric cars do not produce carbon monoxide and nitrous oxide, gases which contribute to climate change.[20][21]Cycling trips have increased by 113% across Sydney's inner-city since March 2010, with approximately 2,000 bikes passing through top peak-hour intersections on an average weekday.[22]

The City of Sydney became the first council in Australia to achieve formal certification as carbon-neutral in 2008.[23][24] The city has reduced its 2007 carbon emissions by 6% and since 2006 has reduced carbon emissions from city buildings by up to 20%.[22][25] The City of Sydney introduced a Sustainable Sydney 2030 programme, with various targets planned and a comprehensive guide on how to reduce energy in homes and offices within Sydney by 30%.[22][26] Reductions in energy consumption have slashed energy bills by $30 million a year.[27]Solar panels have been established on many CBD buildings in an effort to minimise carbon pollution by around 3,000 tonnes a year.[28] Sydney has also become a leader in the development of green office buildings and enforcing the requirement of all building proposals to be energy-efficient.

The One Central Park development, completed in 2013, is an example of this implementation and design.[29][30][31][32] Proposals to make all of Sydney's future buildings sustainable and environmentally friendly by using recycled water, rooftop gardens, efficient and renewable energy.

Sydney Peace Prize

The City of Sydney is a major supporter of the Sydney Peace Prize.


Sister cities

Sydney City Council maintains sister city relations with the following cities:[33]

Friendship cities


  1. ^ a b c d e f Australian Bureau of Statistics (27 June 2017). "Sydney (C)". 2016 Census QuickStats. Retrieved 2017.Edit this at Wikidata
  2. ^ "3218.0 - Regional Population Growth, Australia, 2017-18". Australian Bureau of Statistics. 27 March 2019. Retrieved 2019. Estimated resident population (ERP) at 30 June 2018.
  3. ^ "History of Sydney City Council" (PDF). City of Sydney. Archived from the original (PDF) on 3 December 2012. Retrieved 2007.
  4. ^ a b Green, Antony (5 September 2014). "NSW Parliament looks to stack Sydney City Council - again!". Antony Green's Election Blog - ABC Elections. Retrieved 2018.
  5. ^ Dias, Avani (7 September 2017). "Cabinet papers reveal 1987 decision to sack Sydney council just as Clover Moore set to run for mayor". ABC News. Retrieved 2018.
  6. ^ a b Australian Bureau of Statistics (31 October 2012). "Sydney (C)". 2011 Census QuickStats. Retrieved 2017.Edit this at Wikidata
  7. ^ "Sydney (C)". Religious Affiliation by Age - Time Series Statistics (1996, 2001, 2006 Census Years). Australian Bureau of Statistics. 27 June 2007. Retrieved 2012.
  8. ^ Australian Bureau of Statistics (9 March 2006). "Sydney (C)". 2001 Census QuickStats. Retrieved 2012.
  9. ^ Australian Bureau of Statistics (9 March 2006). "South Sydney (C)". 2001 Census QuickStats. Retrieved 2012.
  10. ^ Australian Bureau of Statistics (25 October 2007). "Sydney (C)". 2006 Census QuickStats. Retrieved 2012.
  11. ^ "Ms Clover Moore (1945- )". Members of the Parliament of New South Wales. Retrieved 2018.
  12. ^ Visentin, Lisa; Robertson, James (11 September 2016). "Clover Moore wins record fourth term as Sydney lord mayor". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 2018.
  13. ^ a b "City of Sydney Council elects new Deputy Lord Mayor" (Press release). City of Sydney. 10 September 2019. Retrieved 2019.
  14. ^ "City of Sydney CEO appointed" (Press release). City of Sydney. 7 August 2006. Retrieved 2017.
  15. ^ a b "Sydney City Council". Local Government Elections 2016. Electoral Commission of New South Wales. 10 September 2016. Retrieved 2012.
  16. ^ "Linda Scott beats Christine Forster for deputy mayor of City of Sydney Council". Central. 25 September 2018. Retrieved 2018.
  17. ^ Visentin, Lisa (19 September 2017). "Jess Miller becomes youngest deputy lord mayor of City of Sydney". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 2017.
  18. ^ "Buses and the Environment". Retrieved 2015.
  19. ^ "City clears the way on pollution-free car fleet". 13 February 2013. Retrieved 2015.
  20. ^ "Causes of Climate Change". Retrieved 2015.
  21. ^ IPCC, "Summary for Policymakers", Detection and Attribution of Climate Change, «It is extremely likely that human influence has been the dominant cause of the observed warming since the mid-20th century» (page 15) and «In this Summary for Policymakers, the following terms have been used to indicate the assessed likelihood of an outcome or a result: (...) extremely likely: 95-100%» (page 2)., in IPCC AR5 WG1 2013.
  22. ^ a b c "Achievements - City of Sydney". Retrieved 2015.
  23. ^ "Sydney Water to become carbon neutral". The Age. 19 July 2007. Retrieved 2015.
  24. ^ "Sydney Becomes Australia's First Carbon-Neutral Government Body". 5 September 2008. Retrieved 2015.
  25. ^ "It's official: Sydney is first carbon-neutral council". 9 November 2011. Retrieved 2015.
  26. ^ "Building owners applaud city's ambitious master plan". 25 February 2015. Retrieved 2015.
  27. ^ "Sydney businesses cotton on: climate change action is good for the bottom line". The Guardian (UK). 18 March 2015. Retrieved 2015.
  28. ^ "City of Sydney extends solar roll out to historic Rocks". 16 June 2014. Retrieved 2015.
  29. ^ "'Greenest' Sydney building using rainforest timber". Sydney Morning Herald. 27 July 2011. Retrieved 2015.
  30. ^ "One Central Park Gardens". Frasers Property. Archived from the original on 23 September 2013. Retrieved 2015.
  31. ^ "Central Park Sydney - Architecture". Frasers Property. Archived from the original on 5 October 2013. Retrieved 2015.
  32. ^ "Sydney Central Park project shows sustainable living". Financial Review. 28 November 2013. Retrieved 2015.
  33. ^ "Sister cities: City of Sydney". 22 February 2019. Retrieved 2019.

External links

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.



Music Scenes