Judging Criteria

The awards consist of two main categories being Heritage and Design.

Entries are restricted to one category.

One award may be given in the Heritage category. The following types of projects can be nominated:

Heritage items: alterations and additions and adaptive reuse

Heritage conservation areas: alterations and additions, adaptive reuse and infill development

  • Understanding site-specific heritage issues
  • Response to streetscape and general context
  • Retention of embodied significance of the building, site and area
  • Use of appropriate materials and conservation techniques
  • Relationship of original and contemporary forms and materials
  • Planning and spatial relationships
  • Demonstrated attention to detail and aesthetic values

An award may be given in the Design category for each subcategory:

Design - Alterations and Additions (other than multiple housing)

  • Response to the context
  • Relationship with the existing building
  • Attention to detail
  • Planning and spatial qualities
  • Materiality

Design - New Buildings (other than multiple housing)

  • Response to the context
  • Detailing and materiality
  • Planning and spatial qualities
  • Bulk, scale and form

Design - New Buildings Multiple Housing

Comprising of buildings with two or more dwellings, whether attached or detached and whether the building includes non-residential uses.

New work:

  • Response to the context
  • Detailing and materiality
  • Planning and spatial qualities
  • Bulk, scale and form

Other Awards

One award may be given.

Entrants will be able to nominate the sustainability features of their project as part of their entry to either the Heritage or Design categories. Judges will review entries with a nominated sustainability component for consideration of an award.

The sustainability category aims to reward projects that provide high levels of comfort and amenity with minimum energy consumption that are suitable for Sydney’s climate. This would include innovative use of building materials, solar power and design, ventilation and passive design, efficient use of energy and water sensitive design.

Building materials:

  • Use of sustainable materials (this includes new materials with low embodied energy, sustainable production techniques etc.)
  • Utilisation of renewable and/or recycled building materials
  • Minimisation of waste

Design and construction:

  • Appropriate use of shading, materials, aspect
  • Climate/weather appropriate design

Solar power and design:

  • Appropriate orientation
  • Use of solar products and conversion energy sources in the building
  • Minimisation of direct sunlight and solar heat entry through windows, glazing, eaves and other products and methods

Ventilation and passive design:

  • Use of space and building features with an emphasis on siting and aspect parameters that minimise energy use and greenhouse gas emissions
  • Features that are harmonious with and/or sensitive to the location and environment

Efficient use of energy:

  • Star efficiency rating of the building
  • Erosion and sediment control, planting and pervious surfaces
  • Systems that optimise the benefits of natural daylight, seasons, changing climatic conditions
  • Use of systems, services and features that minimise consumption and reduce energy costs, water consumption and greenhouse emissions
  • Recycling of materials and resources such as water
  • Reduction of waste landfill materials
  • Reduction of ‘whole of life’ building costs

Water sensitive urban design:

  • Rainwater tanks
  • Grey water reuse systems
  • On-site water detention and reuse
  • Water efficient landscaping and gardens
  • Efficient fixtures and fittings
  • Reduction of storm water pollution and run-off
  • Water collection and reuse

One award may be given.

The Mayor’s Award will be given solely at the Mayor’s discretion, but with regard to the judging criteria.

One award may be given.

Online voting will be available to the public. The winner will be determined by the project with the highest amount of public votes at the conclusion of the People’s Choice voting period.

Key Dates

Nominations open
13 May
Nominations close
21 June
People's Choice opens
22 July
People's Choice closes
14 August
Awards Ceremony
28 August