Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 32451
Touristification of Industrial Waterfronts: The Rocks and Darling Harbour

Authors: Ece Kaya


Industrial heritage reflects the traces of an industrial past that have contributed to the economic development of a country. This heritage should be included within the scope of preservation to remind of and to connect the city and its inhabitants to the past. Through adaptive conservation, industrial heritage can be reintroduced into contemporary urban life, with suitable functions and unique identities sustained. The conservation of industrial heritage should protect the material fabric of such heritage and maintain its cultural significance. Emphasising the historical and cultural significance of industrial areas, this research argues that industrial heritage is primarily impacted by political and economic thinking rather than by informed heritage and conservation issues. Waterfront redevelopment projects create similar landscapes around the world, transforming industrial identities and cultural significances. In the case of The Rocks and Darling Harbour, the goal of redevelopment was the creation of employment opportunities, and the provision of places to work, live and shop, through tourism promoted by the NSW State Government. The two case study areas were pivotal to the European industrial development of Sydney. Sydney Cove was one of the largest commercial wharves used to handle cargo in Australia. This paper argues, together with many historians, planners and heritage experts, that these areas have not received the due diligence deserved in regards to their significance to the industrial history of Sydney and modern Australia.

Keywords: Industrial heritage, post-industrial city, transformation of waterfronts, tourism, consumption.

Digital Object Identifier (DOI):

Procedia APA BibTeX Chicago EndNote Harvard JSON MLA RIS XML ISO 690 PDF Downloads 1074


[1] D. McNab, Waterfront, 2015, p. 7.
[2] T. Ireland, ‘Giving value to the Australian historic past: historical archaeology, heritage and nationalism’, Australasian Historical Archaeology, 2002, vol. 20, pp. 15–25.
[3] I. Baxter, ‘Redundant industrial heritage: the challenges and the solutions!’ Second Australasian Conference on Engineering Heritage, Auckland, 14–16 February, 2000: Proceedings, 2000, pp. 33–42.
[4] DC. Thorns, The transformation of cities, Palgrave Macmillan, Basingstoke, 2002.
[5] S. Lash & J. Urry, Economy of signs and space, SAGE Publications, Thousand Oaks, Calif, 1994.
[6] JR. Logan & T. Swanstrom, ‘Urban restructuring: a critical view’, in N Kleniewski (ed.), 2005 Cities and society, Blackwell, Oxford, 1990.
[7] LH. Turnbull, Sydney: biography of a city, Random House, New York, 1999.
[8] P. Saukko, Doing research in cultural studies: an introduction to classical and new methodological approaches, SAGE Publications, London, 2003.
[9] R. Marshall, ‘Connection to the waterfront: Vancouver and Sydney’, in R Marshall (ed.), Waterfronts in post-industrial cities, Spon Press, London, 2001.
[10] S. Zukin, Naked city: the death and life of authentic urban places, Oxford University Press, New York, 2010.
[11] H. Lefebvre, The production of space, Blackwell, Oxford, 1991.
[12] S. Florio & S. Brownill, ‘Whatever happened to criticism? Interpreting the London Docklands Development Corporation's obituary’, City, vol. 4, no. 1, 2000, pp. 53–64.
[13] R. Bruttomesso, ‘Complexity on the urban waterfront’, in R Marshall (ed.), Waterfronts in post-industrial cities, Spon, London, 2004.
[14] A. Gospodini, ‘Portraying, classifying and understanding the emerging landscapes in the post-industrial city’, Cities, vol. 23, no. 5, 2006, pp. 311–330.
[15] AL. Jones, ‘On the water’s edge: developing cultural regeneration paradigms for urban waterfronts’, in MK Smith (ed.), Tourism, culture and regeneration, CABI, 2007.
[16] SS. Fainstein, ‘Mega‐projects in New York, London and Amsterdam’, International Journal of Urban and Regional Research, vol. 32, no. 4, 2008, pp. 768–785.
[17] H. Smith & MSG. Ferrari (eds.), Waterfront regeneration: experiences in city-building, Routledge, 2012.
[18] D. Harvey, The condition of postmodernity: an enquiry into the conditions of cultural change, Blackwell, Malden, Mass, 1990.
[19] A. Breen & D. Rigby, The new waterfront: a worldwide urban success story, McGraw-Hill, New York, 1996.
[20] T. Hall & P. Hubbard, ‘The entrepreneurial city and the new urban politics’, in P Hubbard & T Hall (eds.), The entrepreneurial city: geographies of politics, regime and representation, John Wiley, New York, 1998.
[21] F. Bandarin, Series on ‘Urban Creativity Forum’, City, Culture and Society, vol. 3, no. 4, 2012, pp. 327–328.
[22] ICOMOS Australia, ICOMOS Guidelines for the Conservation of Places of Cultural Significance, The Burra Charter, 1999.
[23] M. Tafuri, Architecture and utopia: design and capitalist development, The MIT Press, Cambridge, Mass, 1976.
[24] P. Roberts, ‘The evolution, definition and purpose of urban regeneration’, in P Roberts & H Sykes (eds.), Urban regeneration: a handbook, British Urban Regeneration Association, London, 2000.
[25] UNESCO, The Operational Guidelines for the Implementation of the World Heritage Convention Paris: World Heritage Centre/UNESCO, 2008.
[26] L. Smith, Uses of heritage, Routledge, New York, 2006.
[27] D. MacCannell, The tourist: a new theory of the leisure class, University of California Press, Berkeley, Calif, 1999, c1976.
[28] N. Wang, ‘Rethinking authenticity in tourism experience’, Annals of Tourism Research, vol. 26, no. 2, 1999, pp. 349–370.
[29] J. Rice, pers. comm., 19/10/2012.
[30] T. Borrup, Partners for Livable Communities & McKnight Foundation, The creative community builder's handbook: how to transform communities using local assets, art, and culture, Fieldstone Alliance, Saint Paul, Minn, 2006.
[31] S. Zukin, The cultures of cities, Blackwell, Oxford, 1995.
[32] S. Zukin, ‘Urban lifestyles: diversity and standardisation in space of consumption’, Urban Studies, vol. 35, no. 5–6, 1998, pp. 825–839.
[33] J. Urry, The tourist gaze, SAGE Publications, London, 2002.
[34] J. Urry, Consuming places, Routledge, London; New York, 1995.
[35] B. Hayllar & T. Griffin, ‘The precinct experience: a phenomenological approach’, Tourism Management, vol. 26, no. 4, 2005, pp. 517–528.
[36] GJ. Ashworth, ‘Do tourists destroy the heritage they have come to experience?’ Tourism Recreation Research, vol. 34, no. 1, 2009, pp. 79–83.
[37] P. Thalis, pers. comm., 14/11/2012.
[38] L. Smith & E. Waterton, Heritage, communities and archaeology (Duckworth debates in archaeology), Duckworth, London, 2009.
[39] M. Sutton, The Sirius legacy – a conversation, retrieved 11 December 2015 from
[40] (Accessed 25 November 2016).
[41] The State Library of NSW.
[42] (Accessed 4 December 2016).
[43] F. Bandarin & R. van Oers, The Historic Urban Landscape: Managing Heritage in an Urban Century, Wiley-Blackwell, New York, 2012.
[44] UNESCO 2011 Recommendation on the Historic Urban Landscape.
[45] E. Schneider, Past and the present collide in the historic district of The Rocks, retrieved 5 December 2016 from rocks.html.
[46], (Accessed 2 December 2016).
[47] G. Reinmuth, Barangaroo: the loss of trust? (2012, November 20), retrieved 5 December 2016 from