Master Plan

Register or login to voice your views

Protect, preserve and promote

The Master Plan will protect, preserve and promote the historic Callan Park site. Issues such as the Callan Park Act, heritage, social values, landscape, maintenance, financial management, design and uses will all be addressed as part of a detailed community consultation process. The goal is a draft Master Plan by December this year for exhibition and finalisation by April 2011.

Discussion Papers

Leichhardt Council asked the Master Plan team to summarise past studies of Callan Park into discussion papers based on themes identified by the Callan Park Taskforce. These discussion papers are presented here.

This is the first stage of the master plan and it is important that you tell us what you think about each issue, so read the discussion papers and then have your say ».

The Callan Park (Special Provisions)
Act 2002

The Callan Park (Special Provisions) Act 2002 is 'An Act to preserve the public ownership of Callan Park; to protect its current features and restrict its future use; and for other purposes.'

19 July 2010: The draft Discussion Paper has now been revised to reflect community feedback. Leichhardt Council has approved the revised draft for publication.
Download »

The Callan Park (Special Provisions) Act 2002 »
The Callan Park (Special Provisions) Act 2002 - PDF »

Public Space / Community Space

The Public and Community Spaces of Callan Park are unique in Sydney, safe, and easy to access by foot, by road and by public transport. As well as being respected by the local community they have regional significance. The Calllan Park Act protects these public spaces, which are enjoyed and well-used all year round. They offer a variety of differing characters and experiences (e.g. the waterfront, formal gardens and bush areas). Download »

Educational & Cultural land uses

Callan Park has Aboriginal significance as the home of the Wangal people, the original inhabitants of the area. On Leichhardt’s ‘cultural ridge line’ extending from the Red Box through to Balmain, Callan Park has become a symbol of the power of community action and is an increasingly important venue for community & cultural events. Important cultural stakeholders like the Sydney College of the Arts and NSW Writers Centre occupy Callan Park. Download »

Mental Health

Mental Health and related medical activities have a long history on Callan Park. South Sydney West Area Health Services provides accommodation for up to 120 nurses in a cluster of buildings on the eastern edge. NSW Ambulance Headquarters and Australian Education Centre has approximately 200 full time staff and up to 80 student trainees. A number of non-government organisations are active in health and mental health related fields: We Help Ourselves (people recovering from drug & alcohol addiction) Construction Industry Drug & Alcohol Foundation (workplace drug & alcohol safety & education program) The Mental Health Coordinating Council – (peak body for NGOs working in mental health) and Aftercare (information & support for people suffering mental illness). Download presentation »
Download discussion paper »
Have your say »

Transport & Access

Callan Park has many transport and access strengths, including the popular walking and cycling Bay Run, direct bus links, nearby bus stops, signalised pedestrian crossings, and low demand for weekday parking along the waterfront. The pedestrian route along Balmain Road and Darling Street is suitable for mobility-impaired pedestrians, is well lit and has a significant length of awning cover. Download »

Building Assessment & Costs

A 2002 building audit, and a 2007 costing study provide a good basis for future work assessing the costs of refurbishing and adapting existing buildings at Callan Park. Download »

Economic & Financial

Callan Park has significant and unique assets (including Heritage assets) in a special location. Master Planning creates opportunities to explore and investigate potential funding sources. Predictions about the future can be based on existing Sydney Harbour Foreshore Authority information about costs, supplemented by Council's experience managing other foreshore parks and heritage buildings. There is currently no agreement with Sydney Harbour Foreshore Authority on future contributions for maintenance of the site. Download »

Site History & Heritage

Callan Park is a site of cultural and natural heritage significance. It contains the exceptional remains of three highly significant phases of historical development across the site and includes many buildings of varying heritage significance. Community respect for the place, and for its heritage assets, is high. Download »
Heritage Act 1977 (Austlii) »
The Burra Charter (the Australia ICOMOS charter for places of cultural significance) »

Geography & Environmental

Callan Park has potential for an integrated design approach that could achieve innovative, ecologically sustainable development, healthy workplaces and learning experiences. It has a variety of landscaped areas and remnant native bushland for passive and active recreation and a low percentage of built area. Download - ESD »
Download - Water »

Community Groups

Callan Park is has a long history of community involvement and use by community groups, who are well informed about its benefits and its social and recreational potential. As predominantly 'not for profit' organizations, community groups and their activities are compatible with the Callan Park (Special Provisions) Act 2002. Current uses by community groups include an active community garden. Download - Community Groups.

Download - Community Groups »
Download - Urban Agrigculture »


At just over 60 hectares Callan Park offers a range of active recreational uses from large international sized playing fields to small courts and exercise areas. The size of Callan Park prevents different active and passive recreational users coming into conflict with each another, and the groups that use Callan Park are respectful of each other. The Bay Run is well used, the existing sports pavilion is well maintained, and overall Callan Park offers recreational users a different experience on every visit. Download »

Contamination & Remediation

The potential for, and some actual site contamination, has been identified in preliminary site investigations. Further work is needed to pinpoint the extent of contamination and the costs of remediation. Download »


The challenge for infrastructure at Callan Park is to find the right 'mix' of reusing existing services and adding new services. The need for new services will depend on what new uses are identified. Potential new uses are constrained by the Callan Park Act, making it unlikely that future demand will be significantly higher than it is today. Download »