City to the Lake


West Basin, Canberra, ACT, Australia


Land Development Agency (LDA)

Design Team

Jane Irwin Landscape Architecture

Hill Thalis Architecture + Urban Projects

SMEC (Urban Strategy stage only)



City to the Lake extends the city towards the lake to create a vibrant urban waterfront at West Basin. Dramatically enhanced access will connect the Parliamentary zone and major national and regional educational and cultural institutions such as the Australian National University and National Museum of Australia.

Building on the masterplan and design framework established through the ‘Linking Canberra: City to the Lake – Urban Strategy’ this phase of work saw the detailed resolution and documentation of the waterfront and parklands of West Basin.

The waterfront public domain structured by a strong movement spine laid out on the Griffin’s 1918 geometry for West Basin. Made up of slow speed vehicle, commuter and recreational cycleways, and a generous pedestrian boardwalk, this waterfront system connects Commonwealth Park with Acton Peninsula, and connects back to the city and cultural institutions. Punctuating the waterfront are a series of green spaces and urban squares that accommodate events and everyday community life.