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Community and Stakeholder Engagement for the Wynyard Station Upgrade, Australia

As part on the Novo Rail alliance, Aurecon delivered an integrated and innovative communication and stakeholder engagement strategy to support the construction of the Wynyard Station Upgrade in Sydney, Australia

Catering to more than 110 000 pedestrians and customers per day, Wynyard Station is one of the busiest stations in Sydney’s rail network, providing an essential link to the T1 North Shore, Northern and Western Line, T2 Airport, Inner West and South Line, and the T3 Bankstown Line.

The Wynyard Station Upgrade posed significant challenges as the station had to continue its daily operation during the construction phase, requiring the team to do the upgrade works while minimising impacts to customers, staff and nearby businesses.

Aurecon, as part of the Novo Rail alliance with Laing O’Rourke and RCR Infrastructure, led the communication and stakeholder engagement throughout the early works and construction of the project, to establish genuine relationships with the community, effectively communicate the plans for the new station and inform customers of possible day-to-day disruptions. It was imperative the construction team could continue to carry out work with only minimal disruptions to daily commuters and passers-by.

Integrated Communication Programme

Through the Novo Rail alliance, Aurecon helped develop a tailored communication and engagement programme that aimed not only to notify and consult those directly affected by the project, but also to explore opportunities with key stakeholders, Sydney Trains and the City of Sydney Council.

Through a variety of traditional and digital communication channels and tools, the team was able to engage with the stakeholders by disseminating factual information, raising awareness, and gathering their opinions and concerns that can be used in identifying potential risks and finalising the plans for the project. Among the communication and engagement activities used were:

  • Monthly construction updates
  • Quarterly newsletters
  • Customer awareness and change campaigns
  • Accessible group liaison, including use of 3D tactile models
  • Digital communications and augmented reality through a dedicated smart phone app development: NovoView
  • Social media strategy
  • Hoarding and visual displays
  • Live wayfinding on the concourse during major changes
  • Site photography 
  • Direct liaison with impacted stakeholders such as transport operators, businesses and residents

Innovative Community Engagement

As one of Sydney’s busiest train stations, the Wynyard Station Upgrade project called for a bespoke communication and engagement approach to target and reach out to the many groups affected by the project.

With stakeholders ranging from tech-savvy commuters, to travellers with special needs, the Novo Rail alliance used innovative engagement tactics such as smartphone applications (with push notifications feature), tactile models, and well organised community engagement to ensure minimal disruptions and effectively communicate the project’s plans and benefits.

Directly targeting tech-savvy passengers and pedestrians, the NovoView smartphone application was an innovative move for stakeholders to visualise and experience the soon-to-be completed station. It was developed as an interactive way to engage and inform customers about the updates and changes done at the station via its push notifications feature.

The smartphone app also allowed users to better understand the details and design of the upgrade with the Augmented Reality (AR) technology, and spherical panoramas that show the different parts of the upgraded station.

The station upgrade tactile model, on the other hand, was designed for regular Wynyard Station customers who are blind or have poor vision, who will be affected with the changes in the station’s layout. The Novo Rail alliance and Transport for NSW worked with Vision Australia and Guide Dogs NSW/ ACT to develop a prototype of the tactile model to help these customers navigate through the station seamlessly.

In addition to its community engagement activities, Transport for NSW and the Novo Rail alliance engaged with the City of Sydney Council, the NSW Police Force, and Sydney Trains’ Wynyard Station staff to get their input and feedback on how to approach and reach out to the rough sleepers around the station. The NSW government introduced the Protocol for Homeless People in Public Places to help ensure that rough sleepers are treated respectfully and appropriately, and not discriminated.

Once completed, the Wynyard Station Upgrade will be able to meet the projected passenger demand growth and provide improved circulation, safety, and facilities for customers and staff. 

Award winning

This project has won the following awards:

  • 2017 Consult Australia Awards for Excellence - Gold Award Winner for External Stakeholder Engagement Category
  • 2016 IAP2 Core Value Awards - Champion Innovation for Community Engagement Award and Encouragement Award
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