Sydney council calls for Australia’s biggest billboard at Glebe Island Silos to be torn down

glebe_island_silosThe City of Sydney wants to see the Glebe Island Silos billboard, the biggest in the southern hemisphere, to be torn down claiming it is a “permanent blight” on the skyline.

The 200m long sign which sits on the working silos was originally erected in 1992 as part of Sydney’s bid for the 2000 Olympics, but has remained ever since. Whilst it is thought to have a ratecard price of $250,000 for each 28 day cycle, media buyers have told Mumbrella it fetches around $150,000 depending on market conditions.

Now owners of the site The Port Authority NSW has applied to keep the sign up for another seven years, which has drawn an objection from the City of Sydney’s with development director and noted architect Graham Jahn claiming it “does not provide sufficient public benefit”. 

In his submission to the NSW Planning Authority Jahn wrote:  “The only benefits are now the commercial benefits associated with the revenue stream of an advertising structure that has the primary function to reinforce consumer brand names.”

He also opposed the deletion of a clause meaning the signs would not have to be taken down after the current consent lapses in three years time.

A spokesman for Ooh Media said changes to planning rules had allowed them to apply for the extended approval time for the sign.

He added: “This requested modification was also based on the fact that the signage structure is significant, if not iconic, which is generally accepted as being an established part of the area. Its retention for an additional seven years will ensure that it continues to contribute to the character of the area and its setting at Glebe Island.

“At the same time, the provision of a ten year period will ensure that we will be able to make greater level of capital investment in sign maintenance than the overly restrictive three year period.”

They also pointed to the fact the Office of the Environment and Heritage “did not raise any concerns in response to this submission” and said it has no impact on the functioning of the port and would have no “impact on the Bays Precinct Urban Renewal Program”.

Alex Hayes


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