Two positions are currently in place to support Waterloo tenants independently of Land and Housing Corporation (LAHC) during the master planning process. The projects are run by non-government organisations as part of the Groundswell Coalition, which requested funding from LAHC.

Kira Osborne and Thomas Chailloux (Photo: Ashley Asphodel) South Sydney Herald

Thomas Chailloux

Getting ready as a community through capacity building

Empowerment, peer-learning, Community capacity development… There are many words for these types of projects. Many have their own favourite way to refer to it. It all comes down, however, to the same thing: to build the capacity, advocate for and support the community so that diverse government bodies listen to what it has to say.

Waterloo residents should be at the centre of the planning process. This Capacity Building Project, through Inner Sydney Voice, is all about:

  • strengthening the voice of the community and advocating on its behalf.
  • discussing urban design and urban planning issues together before the consultation organised by government starts, so the community is ready to push key messages.
  • learning the language of planners and urban designers so we can interact with them on their level while reminding them that residents are the most important experts about the neighbourhood where they live.
  • circulating information, understanding the planning process, and convincing ourselves that together we can make a difference.

So far, community discussions on urban design and planning issues have included “Social Mix”, “Master Planning for non-planners”, “Density done well and high density neighbourhoods”, “Models of social housing management – public housing and community housing” and “Universal Design”. We also reflected on past consultation processes, and how we can learn from them in order to avoid repeating shortcomings and maximise opportunities. Hopefully, from these activities people feel that they are better able to engage in the government led master planning process and have their voice heard on the future of Waterloo.

Support will continue throughout the whole Master Planning process: during visioning, when studies are released, before and during options testing and finally when the draft master plan is released.

Contact Thomas Chailloux on (02) 9004 2449 or email

Kira Osborne

Building community during uncertainty

How do we support, sustain, and build community cohesion and solidarity during times of instability and uncertainty? How can we reach those most marginalised and isolated; ensuring they receive accurate information and support to participate, and have their voices heard? How do we support communities to advocate for positive social change, manage conflict, and collaborate to build effective relationships? These are some of the current challenges facing the Waterloo community as they stare down the barrel of an urban redevelopment of unprecedented scale.

The Waterloo Redevelopment Community Development (WRCD) project is led by Counterpoint Community Services (previously The Factory), a long-standing independent community organisation in the heart of Waterloo. This project works to foster the growth of community life, support those most marginalised and isolated and engage with local services providers to ensure their clients are informed and supported through the redevelopment process.

Counterpoint appreciates the value of establishing trust and building relationships with community stakeholders, most importantly the residents of Waterloo. The project will collaborate with numerous local organisations to coordinate and support projects that engage with community; supporting the development of their confidence, skill, and knowledge, and building on their strengths and resources. These projects will strive to reach ‘hard to reach’ residents including youth, the elderly, CALD communities and those with a disability.

We recognise the complexity of the Waterloo redevelopment and the challenges it will bring; we respect the history of the area, value the rich diversity of the residents, and believe in the power of a united community. We will work closely with the Waterloo community throughout the entirety of the master plan process and long-term redevelopment, to ensure the strong social fabric connecting Waterloo is maintained and strengthened.

Contact Kira Osborne at The Factory Community Centre, Ph: 9698 9569 Ext. 6 or email

Other support positions

Bilingual educators

Mila Seredenko (Russian) and Denise Fung (Mandarin and Cantonese) will do outreach and co-facilitate workshops through Counterpoint. For details contact Kira Osborne

Aboriginal Liaison Project Worker

An Aboriginal Liaison Project Worker is also being appointed. This position will be auspiced by Inner Sydney Voice and operate from the Waterloo Public Housing Action Group’s Future Planning Centre.