Florist serves a happy customer at a local village.

Village hubs

New York has its boroughs, London has high streets and Sydney has villages. Each one is unique and full of character (and in some cases, characters). That’s part of the reason why we love this city.

Kings Cross, Potts Point, Paddington, Glebe, Surry Hills, Newtown and Darlinghurst have long been sought-after addresses. Pyrmont, Ultimo and Haymarket are hot on their heels. Soon, whole new suburbs – Green Square, Central Park and Barangaroo – will be in the mix.

Sydney’s inner-city areas, including its iconic strips – Oxford Street, Glebe Point Road, King Street and Crown Street – are shopping, dining, drinking and clubbing magnets. For thousands of people, they are also “home”.

The stresses and pressures of modern life and the sheer size of Sydney’s population mean many people can feel disconnected. That’s why the City of Sydney is working to encourage a sense of belonging.

Our villages provide a place for residents to meet, shop, create, learn and work. Everything is at your doorstep or within walking distance – shops, cafes, markets, libraries, and all sorts of services.

We’re doing everything we can to make sure local village centres thrive (see the business section for details). We organise neighbourhood BBQs and other events and we give grants to groups and individuals for projects which support communities.

We’re even purpose-building focal points or hubs to encourage community interaction. Our flagship hub – the one we love to brag about – is the Surry Hills Library and Community Centre. It’s a stunning, sustainable building featuring what is quite possibly the coolest library ever.

The centre has won loads of architectural awards and as well as its hugely popular library (which opens late for live music, saucy storytelling and lively debates) there’s a childcare centre, the Surry Hills Neighbourhood Centre and a function hall inside.

The newest hub is at Green Square, in a historic building called the TOTE. In late 2010 the City officially opened the TOTE community centre and Library Link. Dating back to 1908, the TOTE was part of the long-forgotten Victoria Park Racecourse, once a rival to Royal Randwick.

Green Square is one of the City’s major projects. The oldest industrial area in Sydney is being converted into a dynamic neighbourhood, with a mix of terrace houses, apartments, offices, shops and plenty of open space and community facilities. Very soon, an exciting new underground library and public plaza will transform the heart of Green Square.

Towards 2030, we want Sydneysiders to keep connecting with:

  • their neighbours
  • the community
  • retailers in their local village
  • Council services – libraries, sports and recreation facilities, learning centres and activity hubs.

Sydney 2030: green, global and connected. Go to the strategic directions.