Like stacking and removing books from a bookshelf, modular apartments and an underground modular network of electric vehicles are the centrepiece of Lendlease Bradfield Urbanisation Scholar Caleb Niethe’s vision for Sydney.
The 20-year-old architecture student was announced as the 2017 recipient of the prestigious $10,000-a-year scholarship by Lendlease CEO Steve McCann at the Bradfield Oration held in Sydney last night and attended by NSW Premier, the Hon. Gladys Berejiklian, and more than 200 distinguished guests from Sydney’s business community.
The University of Sydney Vice-Chancellor and Principal Dr Michael Spence said the Bradfield Oration is an opportunity to reflect on Bradfield’s legacy and encourage leadership and vision for the city’s future.
“It is an important occasion to hear from current visionaries including this year’s Bradfield Orator and University alumnus Sir David Higgins, and to recognise our future ‘Bradfields’ – our extraordinary Lendlease Bradfield Urbanisation Scholarship student finalists.
“These are the students with the vision and passion to shape our city’s future, whether it be designing transformative infrastructure, developing more efficient transport, or creating housing and employment solutions that will ensure all citizens of our city have a good quality of life," said Dr Michael Spence.
Caleb Niethe was one of seven University of Sydney student finalists shortlisted by the Scholarship Selection Committee for their visionary ideas to support Sydney’s population boom and to future-proof Sydney’s and Western Sydney’s success as a global city.
A first year student in the Sydney School of Architecture, Design and Planning, Caleb Niethe is part of the first cohort undertaking the new Bachelor of Design in Architecture (Honours) and Master of Architecture, Australia’s only double degree in architecture.
In his acceptance speech, Caleb said: “The truest measure of Sydney’s success is the experiences of the people within it. My strategy for the future of Sydney aims to bring citizens into more invested relationships with the city in which they live, to the benefit of both quality of life and sustainability.
Caleb Niethe's vision for Sydney.
“This is a multifaceted approach targeting housing, transport, and environmental sustainability. Working together these elements will define a zeitgeist unique to the city of Sydney,” he said.
During his Oration, Sir David Higgins, a University of Sydney alumnus of Civil Engineering who has led some of the biggest infrastructure projects in the UK and is currently Executive Chairman of High Speed Two, a new high-speed rail project planned for the UK – emphasised the need to be bold with vision and stick to it, as did John Bradfield.
“There is a fabulous amount of infrastructure underway in Sydney. The future is about quality of life, so it needs to stand the test of time,” said Sir David Higgins.
The Oration also celebrated two people who were added to the Bradfield Honour Roll – a prestigious list of Sydney visionaries that has pride and place in the University of Sydney Quadrangle. They were Colonial Architect James Johnstone Barnet (1827-1904), a Scotsman who migrated to Sydney in 1854 and was a clerk of works at the University of Sydney. He went on to join the Colonial Architect’s Office and was responsible for designing and building several treasured public buildings in Sydney, including the General Post Office, Customs House, the Public Library, Callan Park’s hospital and the University’s Medical School.
Alumna and former NSW Governor and Chancellor of the University of Sydney, Professor The Hon. Dame Marie Bashir AD CVO was also inducted and applauded for her long career and contribution to the city and state, in addition to her extensive work and interests in medicine, mental health and social issues.