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City to the Lake

Image of a tablet displaying the 3D fly-through of the City to the Lake development

Getting on with it

City to the Lake is one of Australia’s largest urban renewal projects.  It is being undertaken by the ACT Land Development Agency for the ACT Government.

City to the Lake is a transformational project within Canberra’s City Plan that builds on Walter Burley Griffin’s enlightened foundations. It is a long term and visionary project that will guide public and private investment in Canberra’s second century.

City to the Lake is to be a world class urban waterfront precinct that extends the city centre towards Lake Burley Griffin and connects it to its central parklands. A destination where the everyday life of the city meets the water and showcases the best its community has to offer.
When City to the Lake was introduced to Canberrans in 2013, they said “just get on with it”.  So we are!

What’s happening now?


Photo renders of the City to the Lake project sitting next to a coffee cup

An exciting place to explore and enjoy

A place of delight, celebration and for bringing people together

  • Boardwalks link the entire West Basin waterfront
  • Generous, separated pedestrian and cycle paths
  • Water gardens filter stormwater
  • Aquatic centre with urban beach and beach pool
  • Cafes, restaurants, shops, galleries, parks and playgrounds
  • Sailing boats, pedaloes, canoe and bike hire
  • Pop up activities, events, festivals, celebrations




Image of a dragonfly sitting on a boardwalk viewed from above


Enhancing life in the city

Growth and development to create a sustainable city

  • Diverse, accessible, active, comfortable and sociable city precinct
  • New residences for 10,000 additional people living in the city by 2031
  • Commercial, retail, hotels and cultural facilities
  • Ferries, water taxis and continuous public access for cyclists and pedestrians
  • Reworking Parkes Way creates a new frontage to the central parklands
  • New convention facilities and city stadium significantly adds to city economy






3D artists impression of the suggested sports stadium

Something for everyone

Community infrastructure to enhance the economy and liveability of the city

  • West Basin aquatic centre with urban beach and beach pool
  • Australia Forum convention, conference and exhibition centre
  • 30,000 seat under cover rectangular stadium with public health and well being facilities
  • Digital infrastructure extends live site fan experience beyond venues
  • Early activation retail pop-ups, container venues and outdoor event spaces




Blueprint image of the proposed 2-tier Parkes Way development

Behind the scenes

The key to connecting the City to the Lake is how we treat Parkes Way. It plays a vital role as a major traffic artery, although in its present form, it is a major barrier that isolates and disconnects the city from its waterfront and its main city parks.

To overcome this barrier while retaining good traffic flow it is proposed to construct Parkes Way as a ‘smart boulevard’. It will be split level allowing free flowing traffic at the lower level and introducing local city streets at the surface.

  • Conversion of Parkes Way into a ‘smart boulevard’
  • Traffic calming measures on Vernon Circle and London Circuit
  • New street development to improve access to West Basin residential and community areas
  • Central interchange point for Capital Metro light rail
  • Strategically located multi-use car parks for events and commuter car parking
  • New ferry terminal