Our plan to protect the iconic, edgy and historic Kings Cross

Council has unanimously endorsed for public exhibition:

  • New planning controls for Darlinghurst Road that describe the area’s character and include key principles for new development, that have been informed by community feedback;

  • New site specific controls with design requirements for the section of Darlinghurst Road fronted by the Bourbon and Beefsteak to the Empire Hotel, to ensure new development is sympathetic to the surrounding streetscape, protects heritage and sunlight and supports the existing character of the area; and

  • New heritage listings for three sites along Darlinghurst Road - Kingsley Hall, the façade of the Bourbon and Beefsteak and the social and historical significance of the Empire Hotel, which was once home to the famous nightclub, Les Girls.

We’re recommending that future developments retain the look and feel of the current streetscape and prioritise street activation, human scale and “fine grain uses” – all things the community said were important. We’re also recommending new developments set aside 50 per cent of floor space for non-residential uses such as shops, restaurants, cafes and other services.

These changes were overseen by the City’s eminent Design Advisory Panel and informed by extensive community feedback – 250 people made comments via an online survey and at the weekly Kings Cross Markets and 76 attended a community workshop hosted by the City.  A new urban design study by Zanardo Studio and a heritage study by PTW Architects also contributed to the work.

A second development control plan with specific built form controls for the remainder of Darlinghurst Road is being prepared and will be reported to Council next year.

It is now on public exhibition so please have your say by 23 October: https://www.cityofsydney.nsw.gov.au/draft-planning-controls-for-darlinghurst-road

Image: Les Girls on Darlinghurst Road in Kings Cross. Courtesy of the City of Sydney Archives.