With more than 500 successful projects under our belt, there are far too many to list here.
So, we’ve curated a selection of our recent projects to give you an idea of the breadth of our work.
Our clients include local councils, State government agencies, not-for-profit and community organisation across regional NSW. Our core focus is on creating positive outcomes for regional communities.
If you want to know more, we’d love to talk.
Our track record
With over a decade in business, we have a proven track record of delivering high quality work, within budget and on time.
This includes working across local government functions, understanding different levels of government and collaborating with regional communities to create positive change.
Locale was engaged by Council to undertake a consultation and design process for the Batemans Bay main street area. The project reinforced the core business district and integrated it with previous work undertaken by our associate land architect, Stuart Drury. The project sought to provide for the cyclical influx of tourism whilst being practical for local residents who use the area on a day to day basis throughout the year.
Locale designed and facilitated a one-day workshop for Kempsey Shire Council to discuss boating improvements for Back Creek at South West Rocks. This involved councillors, Council staff, State government agencies, local community and business members coming together to work out possible solutions for safe navigation in the creek. With a high level of community and visitor use, having safe boating was a key priority.
We have completed numerous cemetery strategies for various councils, often with a master plan to assist in defining details on future directions. For Central Coast Council, we initially reviewed cemetery capacity, then prepared a cemetery services strategy and associated master plans for two key cemeteries. This set out a clear picture of capacity, land constraints to be overcome and the associated cost of development.
Locale designed and implemented an independent engagement process for the exhibition of this controversial planning proposal. Facing a housing crisis that has worsened over many years, Council sought to restrict the use of housing for short-term holiday letting. With a strong lobby and recognised industry impacts on one side and a frustrated community on the other, the project required careful and comprehensive engagement.
Locale was initially engaged to advise on the social and economic benefits of annual licence sites. Given their integral place within holiday parks, we were subsequently engaged to undertake a broader community engagement process for long-term park planning, resulting in the development of Master Plans across the five Macleay Valley Coast Holiday Parks and their inclusion within a generic plan of management.
Locale have undertaken a range of site specific and generic plans of management under the Crown Land Management Act 2016 arrangements. At Port Macquarie, we developed a comprehensive generic plan of management that establishes a clear and simple framework, with locality-based plans providing the community with easily located and understood information on a full range of Council managed Crown lands.
Working with our associate landscape architect Stuart Drury, Locale prepared a master plan for Riverside Park and adjoining streetscape in the town of Woodburn. The project involved the upgrade and reconfiguration of the park to enable the area to be used for a wide range of sporting, tourism and community purposes. Locale also prepared a successful funding submission to assist the initial phases of implementation.
Using our in-depth understanding of the NSW land-use planning system, we have worked over a number of years with DSSS to first understand the barriers to agritourism and to then develop balanced and informed responses. The project involved assisting DSSS with representations to ministers, the Department of Planning, and once traction was gained, providing education and advice to the broader Destination Networks.
As part of an integrated project across a large project area, Locale worked with the Council to prepare a Destination Master Plan, Landscape Master Plan and Plan of Management for the Narooma Flats area. The project included a range of tourism activity areas, sporting facilities, caravan park and community facilities. The project seeks to establish a long-term vision for the area from a community, tourism and economic development perspective.
During the Covid-19 pandemic, Locale was engaged by Coffs Harbour City Council to assist in preparing a response and recovery plan. We worked closely with an Internal Working Group to establish the direction for the plan. We also designed and facilitated three online roundtables with key community, business and social services stakeholders to capture ideas and establish directions that were subsequently adopted by Council.
Following our detailed stakeholder consultation about the Nowra Showground Plan of Management and Master Plan, Locale were invited to create a detailed master plan and associated tourism grant application for the spectacular Ben’s Walk and Hanging Rock lookout area. Being integrated with the Showground and its available camping facilities, the project highlighted the potential role of showgrounds in tourism activities.
Locale was engaged to help property owners who were impacted by the 2019/2020 bushfires in the Shoalhaven region. These property owners had not rebuilt after the bushfires. We worked collaboratively with Shoalhaven City Council and the Rural Fire Service to understand the context and common challenges in rebuilding. We then provided tailored support and advice to property owners so they could progress in rebuilding their homes.
Locale was engaged by Byron Shire Council to prepare a Housing Options Paper. This outlines how Council will facilitate the supply of housing in the Shire over the next 20 years. The Paper considered recent changes to NSW Government policy as well as the impacts from the 2022 floods. We facilitated several information sessions with the community and reviewed the submissions in a high-level engagement report.
Locale provided governance and project advice to Council on the potential formation of a not for profit entity to deliver community services including aged care. We subsequently prepared the tender documentation to enable Council to divest these services and transfer them to an existing community service provider.
Marriott Park is a large, centrally located public park in the regional centre of Nowra. Working with our associate landscape architect Stuart Drury, we undertook detailed consultation and preparation of a master plan. The area combined community facilities, recreational use and a need to activate the space to ensure ongoing community safety. A Livvi’s place playground was subsequently designed by Stuart.
The Ulladulla Lighthouse Group were formed out of necessity for change. We were fortunate to work with this community group and help address the issues they were facing. Through thoughtful stakeholder and community engagement, we designed an engaging outcome for this heritage listed item, bringing together a community that was highly invested, with our associate landscape architect seeing the project through to construction.
Following the devastating floods of early 2022, Locale worked with Council to develop a discussion paper, undertake comprehensive consultation and establish a findings report to understand and respond to community needs around long-term planning. The project sought to uncover difficult to reach community views during a period of uncertainty and high emotion.
With Council staff delivery of this project facing targeted opposition, Locale was engaged to design and facilitate a series of consultation events to gain a clear and independent view of the situation. This included a one-day workshop with Councillors, Council staff and sporting groups from local groups to State Sporting Organisation (SSO’s) about the proposed site options and future selection process.
Working with the Council recognised community group, the Berry Forum, Locale undertook community-led planning processes to develop a series of strategic priorities for presentation to the Council and to assist in creating unified community directions. The engagement included surveys and community led workshops, with strategies developed for the town centre, tourism, assets, sustainability and youth.
Locale undertook a high-level strategic review of Kempsey Shire Council’s four public swimming pool facilities. This considered key indicators for the pools, consulting via survey and targeted discussions to inform future directions that met both Council and community needs. High costs, ageing facilities and changing community preferences all highlighted the need for change. The Strategy set the direction for the next 5-10 years.
Locale prepared a Plan of Management and Master Plan for the former Rathmines Park RAAF base area on the foreshore of Lake Macquarie. The expansive area has a wide range of uses, heritage overlays and areas of environmental importance. With an active and engaged community, Rathmines Park provides important waterfront open space that is to be celebrated within its historical context.
Locale has been engaged to assess workplace teams to map and understand the causes of conflict in order to address dysfunction and disharmony, including practical and actionable recommendations. We have also undertaken workplace and public mediations to restore and enhance working relationships within large organisations, small teams and the community.
Locale assisted Byron Shire Council to develop and implement a comprehensive engagement process to support the preparation of its Dogs in Public Space Strategy. The provision of off-leash and dog prohibited areas is often controversial in any local government setting and involves balancing competing interests. Our careful and thoughtful engagement approach resulted in a balanced Strategy outcome.
Locale was engaged by Kempsey Shire Council to undertake consultation and advise on the social and economic benefits of annual licence sites. These sites, commonly known as ‘holiday vans’, are important to many regional towns and provide a steady income to caravan parks. But they also lock-up public land to those licence owners and can restrict access to tourists, meaning that a careful balance is needed.
Following the 2019/2020 bushfires, Locale was engaged by Lismore City Council to deliver community-led and place based resilience plans in collaboration with the Nimbin and Channon communities. We co-designed the engagement, facilitated the engagement activities, organised an education event with State agencies and prepared and launched the plans with each community.
As the leading cemetery strategy advisor for regional councils in NSW, Locale have delivered more than a dozen cemetery strategies and related projects. The MidCoast project involves 34 cemeteries, across three former local government areas. Starting with an overarching strategy, the project includes maintenance and operational documents aimed at ensuring consistency and meeting newly introduced standards.
Sometimes small public areas have the biggest problems. For this project we worked with Wollongong City Council to prepare a series of options for the redevelopment of a small but important town centre square in Dapto. Council sought a series of interim, low-cost place-making ideas that could be used to test the long-term use of the area – resulting in short, medium and long-term plans.
Locale worked with Shoalhaven City Council’s Waste Services to undertake a series of focus groups to test and develop education and promotional materials. Waste management is a critical function of local government, but long gone are the days of simply disposing of waste to landfill. This project sought to ensure that Council’s cutting-edge technology and its circular economy objectives meet the needs of the community.
As part of our engagement for this broader flood recovery and future planning project, Locale developed an engagement kit to facilitate ‘at home’ engagement. The design and subsequent promotion of the ‘kitchen table conversation kit’ were aimed at getting affected communities to meet with each other and talk about the issues. The aim was to tap into grassroots conversations and initiatives.
Following Locale preparing a number of sector strategies and business plans for Council’s Economic Development Unit, we were invited to prepare its Economic Development Strategy. This brought together a range of imperatives for how Council interacts with its business community and progresses sustainable, diverse employment opportunities. We also completed an Export Strategy and have assisted in planning for Council’s industrial land portfolio.
Locale developed an NSW industry-wide Cemetery Maintenance Guide that provides practical application of simple principles to assist the industry to improve the quality and safety of their cemetery sites. The Guide identifies 10 maintenance themes, establishing examples of opportunities to improve through a range of cemetery sizes. It provides a basis for maintenance requirements which are part of the NSW Interment Industry Scheme.
Locale designed and facilitated two community workshops on the refresh of the Byron Shire Community Strategic Plan and a two-day programme with councillors on the new Delivery Program. The workshops involved deep engagement with community members on the vision for the Shire and explored the relevance of the existing objectives and strategies in the CSP. We worked closely with Council staff to collaborate on the project.
Working with Crown Lands newly formed tourism unit, Locale designed and implemented a statewide engagement process for Crown land managers that operate caravan parks. From local to state government, to volunteer showgrounds and large scale private enterprise, we explored the full range of park scale and operational capability. The project involved one-to-one interviews, online surveys and workshops across five regional centres.
We worked with eight villages within the Jervis Bay and St Georges Basin area to establish a community-led strategic plan across the area. The project was established through extensive community consultation designed by Locale and undertaken by the community. This has seen a series of strategic priorities established for presentation to Council and to assist in creating a united direction for the various individual communities.
Reclassification of public land can be a controversial decision. We are highly experienced in acting as an independent chair of public hearings that propose the reclassification of public land in a range of different circumstances and specifically when there is a high degree of community interest and opposition. We have chaired hearings for Kiama, Nambucca, Byron, Shoalhaven and Clarence councils.
We have delivered whole of staff training on the Code of Conduct and dealing with difficult people for numerous councils. Our training is interactive and relevant, using case studies and real-life examples to engage with a wide range of participants from senior management, outdoor staff and volunteers.
Our door is always open for a good cup of coffee and conversation to see if we are the right fit.