This project is in its infancy however it appears Australian billionaire James Packer and his company Crown Limited are set to build one of Sydney's tallest towers at the 22 hectare waterfront development site known as Barangaroo.
Crown Limited won the rights to a two year planning and development phase with Barangaroo developer Lend Lease in which details about the location, height and size of a new hotel will be fine tuned. Crown Limited has already submitted plans for the $1 billion+ project with the NSW Government. The Government has progressed the concept to the second stage of its three phase assessment process for major private sector projects. It will now be subject to a financial assessment and, if successful, an international design competition could be held.
Packer plays high for hotel at Barangaroo
October 24, 2012 - 11:49PM
JAMES PACKER is pushing to alter building height limits at Barangaroo to add up to 20 storeys to his planned $1 billion hotel and casino complex and make it one of Sydney’s tallest towers.
He has received strong support from the former prime minister Paul Keating, who has declared the complex should be designed along the lines of a ‘‘Brancusi sculpture’’ and is also backing the idea of a second casino for Sydney.
The Herald has confirmed Mr Packer’s company Crown Limited is in talks to increase the allowable height for a hotel in the concept plan for Barangaroo approved by the state government.
Under the approved plan, the hotel is situated on a pier jutting into Sydney harbour and capped at 170 metres, or about 40 storeys.
But after calls by the Premier, Barry O’Farrell, for the hotel to be relocated, Crown announced a two-year agreement with Barangaroo’s developer, Lend Lease, to build it at Barangaroo South.
Crown is in discussions with Lend Lease and the state government’s Barangaroo Delivery Authority to have the allowable height increased to as many as 60 storeys, or up to 250 metres.
Such a building would tower over others approved at Barangaroo and deliver sweeping views over the city. It would also place it among the top 10 tallest buildings in Sydney.
It is understood Crown is arguing that its proposal is in line with the vision of Mr Keating, who has supported the view of the architect of Barangaroo, Lord Richard Rogers, that the hotel should provide an ‘‘exclamation mark’’.
Sources close to Crown said the company believes that if Barangaroo is to have a landmark building to attract tourists from around the world, it would be difficult to achieve if it was not visible among the commercial towers.
Increasing the number of floors would significantly increase the potential returns to Crown from the development.
Lend Lease is understood to feel it is entitled to some reward for agreeing to relocate the hotel from over the harbour, for which it already has planning approval.
Mr Keating, a former chairman of the Barangaroo Design Excellence Review Panel, told the Herald it was important that the landmark hotel be able to compete with the three ‘‘very large’’ towers adjacent to it.
‘‘It’s diminutive compared with the three towers next to it, yet it’s supposed to be the diva on the stage,’’ he said.
‘‘I think you can make an argument in design terms that the hotel ... should be taller than the three towers.’’
Mr Keating said he was more concerned with the quality of the new building. ‘‘If it’s going to have height it ought to be a sculptured building, perhaps something like a Brancusi sculpture,’’ he said.
He believed opponents of the positioning of the original hotel on a pier over Sydney harbour, which led to a height reduction and Mr O’Farrell’s request that it be moved, only had themselves to blame if Crown was seeking to restore its height in the new place.
Yesterday an anti-gambling campaigner, the Reverend Tim Costello, argued a second casino was inappropriate, but Mr Keating disagreed, arguing it would fund a ‘‘grander’’ building.
‘‘The philosophical question about a casino there was settled 20 years ago, when premier [Nick] Greiner and premier [John] Fahey agreed to establish the casino half a kilometre way,’’ he said.
Mr O’Farrell has said Mr Packer’s plan will go through the state government’s ‘‘unsolicited proposal’’ process, which paves the way for the government to grant a second casino licence, which Mr Packer will require if the project is to proceed. Crown’s competitor, Echo Entertainment, holds Sydney’s monopoly casino licence until 2019.
The former Labor premier Morris Iemma has argued any second casino licence should go to a public tender. Mr Keating declined to give his view.
However, the Echo chairman, John O’Neill, yesterday questioned why there would not be a competitive tender for the casino licence and even the hotel.
On Tuesday the proposal received conditional backing from the Labor shadow cabinet. Labor said the complex must not contain poker machines or encroach on areas set aside for public space at Barangaroo and offer a fair rate of return to NSW.
It also said Echo, which owns the Star casino, must be allowed to retain its monopoly casino licence until 2019.
With Rick Feneley
Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/nsw/packer-plays-high-for-hotel-at-barangaroo-20121024-2860o.html#ixzz2ADrSRl98
Here are some news articles about the tower. Note the curved tower shown on the far right. It is the tallest of the International Towers at Barangaroo (217m);architecture&design
Packer hints at design competition for towering Barangaroo casino plans
26 October, 2012
James Packer is seeking to add up to 20 storeys above the allowable height limit on his planned $1 billion hotel and casino complex at Barangaroo, receiving support from former Prime Minister Paul Keating and both Labor and Liberal backing in NSW.
Keating told the Sydney Morning Herald that he is hoping the new building will be reminiscent of a 'Brancusi' sculpture and he thinks it should be taller than the surrounding towers and a 'diva' in the area.
It supports the view of Barangaroo architect, Lord Richard Rogers, who says the hotel should provide an ‘‘exclamation mark’’ for the area.
‘‘If it’s going to have height it ought to be a sculptured building, perhaps something like a Brancusi sculpture,’’ Keating said.
He added: "It’s diminutive compared with the three towers next to it, yet it’s supposed to be the diva on the stage.’’
Later at a public event in Sydney, Packer jokingly commented on Keating's affection for architecture.
"I love listening to Paul talk about architecture - it's like listening to someone read Fifty Shades of Grey," he said.
He added that he is interested in the idea of holding a design competition for the new casino which is being developed by Lend Lease.
NSW Premier Barry O’Farrell this week announced that the proposal for the six-star hotel resort with VIP-only gaming facilities has moved to the second stage of government consideration.
“Crown’s submission is that the development would see up to $1 billion invested in NSW and would result in more than 1,200 jobs,” O’Farrell said.
“As Sydney’s first six-star hotel, it would be a world-class tourist facility which would help us compete with other global destinations particularly in the lucrative and booming Asian tourism market," O’Farrell said.
Architecture & Design has sought comment from Crown Limited.
This is a newspaper clipping of what the tower COULD look like and the location of certain facilities
The design is very much subject to change, this is just a preliminary design.