Creating edible outdoor rooms

Gadi Country / Foster Street, Surry Hills, NSW

Read more about the Creating edible outdoor rooms project.

Creating edible outdoor rooms

2012 Gadi Country / Foster Street, Surry Hills, NSW

Edible Outdoor Rooms stems from our ongoing interest in activating under-utilised public spaces. It was located along Foster Street, in our old studio neighbourhood, in the lower section of Surry Hills in inner Sydney. It was made possible, in part, by a $20,000 Community Services Grant from the City of Sydney. It was inspired by our desire to create a lively public space for the local working and residential community.

Foster Street has a great deal of character and charm, lined with creative industries, galleries, cafés, bars and design showrooms. Yet the narrow footpaths on both sides of the street make safe pedestrian movement difficult and gathering of people on the street almost impossible.

The installation sought to improve the amenity of the street by widening areas of the footpath to create areas for public to sit and enjoy the sunshine. Concrete pipes were used as outdoor seating and for growing edible plants. Planting by volunteers gave the local community a chance to engage with place and the opportunity to learn and share their knowledge and skills.

Workshops run by local chef, Hamish Ingham, taught participants about growing food in an urban environment and the preparation of edible plants. Edible Outdoor Rooms was a unique collaboration of design professionals, community members and local government.


Edible Garden Design by Jamie Durie 2013

Project Team

Sam Crawford, Felicity Gartelmann, Claire McCaughan, Ellie Gutman, Wai-Yee Ho

The following firms/ companies provided their services pro bono

Bates Landscape
Jane Irwin Landscape Architects
CMS Surveyors
NSW Certifiers
Northrop Engineers
Cement Australia
BC Sands

Andreasens Green
Bar H

Special Thanks to:

The City of Sydney
Michale Bates and the Bates Landscape team without whom we could not have completed the project.
Glenn Wallace, Special Projects Program Manager, City of Sydney
Building owners, business owners, residents and workers of Foster Street