About us

The City of Sydney

Sydney is a vibrant, cosmopolitan city with a diverse population featuring a rich history, internationally-recognised tourist attractions and an exciting calendar of events. The City of Sydney is the local government authority responsible for the city centre and more than 30 suburbs within our boundaries.

In 2007, we asked residents and businesses what they wanted to see happen over the next 20 years and beyond. The result is a collective vision for Sydney’s future development called Sustainable Sydney 2030, which will make Sydney a green, global and connected city. The City is fast becoming a leading environmental performer and our sustainability plan guides what we do – sustainable development is not just about the physical environment but it is also about fostering Sydney’s economy, society and culture into our plans.

The area we look after covers just over 26 square kilometres extending from Sydney Harbour at Rushcutters Bay, to Glebe and Annandale in the west, from Sydney Park and Rosebery in the south to Centennial Park and Paddington in the east.

Our role

We provide services for more than 200,000 residents and 20,000 businesses, as well as the daily influx of workers and visitors into the City. On any given day, the local population swells to more than 1 million with people commuting, doing business, shopping, playing, studying, or here to see the sights of Sydney.

In most parts of the local area, the City is the main consent authority for new development. Applications that are costed above $50 million are considered by the Central Sydney Planning Committee of which the City is a member, while some areas in the City come under other authorities.

We provide essential local services such as our network of libraries, street cleansing, maintaining roads, assessing development applications, collecting waste and recycling, maintaining our parks, playgrounds and gardens, our sports venues and community centres.

We encourage responsible pet ownership through our registration service and provide other services for domestic animals and their owners such as off-leash areas in local parks. And we work with residents and government to campaign for high quality public amenity through increased open public spaces and an integrated transport network that includes building cycleways.

The City is working with the State Government to transform George Street into a pedestrian-friendly boulevard, improving our transport system with light rail and we are continuing our work to revitalise our laneways. We work with other groups and organisations to care for the natural and built environments, and we team with police, local businesses and village communities to improve safety.

Our services, programs, and projects support our local communities and include our activity centres for older people, services for young people, child care facilities, our grants and sponsorship programs that are designed to invigorate communities and our homelessness services which help many thousands of people each year.

The City supports the commercial sector with a range of programs and seminars. We are responsible for health policy, regulations and standards, and we monitor food safety and public and environmental health across the local area.

Our services, programs and projects are funded from business rates and property owner rates – our residential rates continue to be among the cheapest in NSW.

The City is committed to public consultation and ensures all major proposals are publicly exhibited to encourage community input. Members of the public are welcome to address council committee meetings and we regularly welcome feedback from the public about specific issues.

We act as a champion for Sydney and strive to advance and enhance its reputation as Australia's premier city on a global level through:

Your councillors

The Council of the City of Sydney and all other councils in NSW operate within a legislative framework that is decided by the State Government.

The City's 10 councillors are elected for a 4-year term by residents and ratepayers (business and property owners) and the Lord Mayor is popularly elected.

Councillors make decisions on all key matters at Council and Committee meetings. Members of the public can address committee meetings and may also attend Council meetings.

The City consults the community regularly to seek the opinions of residents, business owners and other interested parties to ensure they play a role in the decision-making process.

City of Villages

The City of Sydney is made up of 10 village precincts, each with their own unique character:

CBD and HarbourChinatown and CBD SouthCrown and Baptist StreetsGlebe Point RoadGreen Square and City SouthHarris StreetKing StreetMacleay Street and WoolloomoolooOxford StreetRedfern Street

We think it's important to maintain the unique qualities of these village precincts and aim to foster the best possible standard of city living in each one through delivering an appealing urban environment and attractive leisure, recreation and community facilities.

Our annual calendar of events encourages people to interact with their neighbours, become involved in the local community and to explore the City of Villages.

City residents

The local area has one of Australia's most ethnically diverse populations – almost half of our residents were born overseas and about 30% speak a language other than English. The most common language spoken at home after English is Chinese, followed by Indonesian, Korean and Greek.

We aim to foster a range of multicultural programs and initiatives that recognise the rich contribution multicultural groups make to city life.

The local area is home to one of Sydney's largest Aboriginal communities and we are committed to a process of reconciliation with the traditional custodians of the land. We also offer specific services and programs to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples who live in the local area.

We also respect and recognise the significant contributions of other groups that are well represented in our local area, such as gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender communities.

Almost half of our residents are aged between 18 and 34. There are proportionally fewer teenagers, children and older people living in the local area compared to the rest of the Sydney metropolitan region.

The City provides programs tailored to help older adults keep enjoying a healthy, active and involved lifestyle. Our less active older residents receive support services to help them to continue living comfortably and independently at home.

We offer a range of services and programs for young people and encourage their contributions to the community, and we are committed to being inclusive and accessible, providing information and services catering specifically to our residents, workers and visitors with a disability.

Housing for a diverse population is part of our Sustainable Sydney 2030 plan and we are finding innovative ways of creating affordable housing. At present, more than half of all City residents rent their home in the private sector, the remaining third own or are paying off their home, and just over 10% are public and community housing tenants.


City of Sydney
02 9265 9333