Lake Macquarie

First Nations Design for Toronto Foreshore Upgrade

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Key Information

Expressions of Interest - First Nations Design for Toronto Foreshore Upgrade


  • Original First Nations Designs for Toronto foreshore - $15,000

Applications due: Monday March 18, 2024. 5pm AEST

Project delivery date: Final designs May 27, 2024

Open to: all NSW artists and creatives

About the opportunity

Lake Macquarie City Council is seeking proposals for First Nations designs for the built environment for the Toronto Foreshore upgrades. The final designs will be included in the built environment including, pathways, seating, and concrete, stone and wooden structures.


Lake Macquarie City Council is committed to fostering a creative community by providing quality, accessible opportunities within community facilities to encourage cultural awareness, create professional development pathways for artists and celebrate community identity.

Toronto foreshore is a popular community civic environment with an ocean bath, café, green and recreational spaces for locals and visitors. The previous and current upgrades to the site aim to increase the amenity of the foreshore as well as represent the cultural values of the region. The Toronto foreshore revitalisation is an important project in Lake Macquarie. See more information: Toronto foreshore revitalisation - Lake Macquarie City Council

Target audience

  • The community of Toronto
  • Users of the Toronto Foreshore
  • Visitors


29 Victory Parade, Toronto 2283. View in Google Maps

Aboriginal Cultural Heritage

The Awabakal people are the traditional custodians of the Lake Macquarie region. Early government documents indicate this large tribe was composed of a number of clans - the Awabakal (Lake Macquarie and Newcastle region), the Five Islands Clan, the Ash Island clan, the Kurungbong clan, and the Pambalong clan (Swamps district).

The effect of European settlement (early 1800s) was devastating to these groups. Their land was taken and the animal and plant resources in the region diminished. This brought misunderstanding and conflict and a devastating diminishing of clans through conflict with Europeans and disease.

The Purpose

The inclusion of the commissioned designs will add value to the site and provide representation of First Nations symbols/representation to this important community and cultural place.

Details about the commission

The design must meet the following physical specifications:

  • A minimum of five original designs for the site to be utilised in seating, pathways and concrete, stone and wooden structures.
  • The final designs need to be provided in a digital format, scalable in size and in DWG file format for fabrication.
  • Designs must represent the local First Nation’s history and culture of the site e.g., middens, gunyas, flora and fauna native to region.
  • Consultation with endorsed cultural elders is required prior to design approval and fabrication.
  • The final designs will be approved by representative and nominated Lake Macquarie cultural elders.

Specific project requirements

  • The successful project would be a source of pride for the local community.
  • The work should utilise local histories, symbolism or representation (e.g., local flora and or fauna)
  • The work will have visual impact.
  • The commission is intended to be semi-permanent and must have a minimum useful life of 10 years.

Criteria for selection

In selecting a concept, the selection panel will consider (but not be limited to) the following key selection criteria:

  • Open to all First Nations NSW Artists
  • Quality of visual representation
  • Originality of the concept
  • Relevance to proposed location and cultural values.

Lake Macquarie City Council will cover the costs associated with:

  • Implementation and installation of design into built form.
  • Photography of final artwork/designs.
  • Opening/launch event.
  • Onsite signage and interpretive panel.
  • Media and marketing.

Council will consider additional sundry requests such as preliminary travel and accommodation based on application.

The selected artist will be paid 50% of the artist commission upon approval of the artist concept and 50% after delivery of final artwork/design. Alternative instalment arrangements can be negotiated.

Artists are invited to submit their EOI in response to the brief.

Responses should include:

  1. Contact details: name, telephone, mobile, email address, street address, ABN.
  2. Current CV relevant to the opportunity (maximum one page).
  3. Up to 500 words describing your concept.
  4. Up to five examples of previous works

For an EOI to be considered, the artist must comply with the following requirements:

  1. All applicable EOI documentation is completed in full and submitted; and
  2. The EOI is lodged by the specific closing time.

Any EOI that does not comply with the above requirements or meet the minimum content standards may be deemed non-compliant and eliminated from the assessment process unless it is clear that the artist has made an unintentional error of form.

Expressions of interest may be lodged with Council either electronically via SmartyGrants

Or in hard copy format:

Lake Macquarie City Council Offices

126 – 138 Main Road, Speers Point NSW 2284

PO Box 1906 HRMC NSW 2310

Artists are responsible for ensuring that any documents or information sent electronically are in an acceptable format (such as PDF, Excel or Word).

All applicants are encouraged to discuss your EOI pitch and application form and or to discuss accessibility adjustments to the application process, please contact:

Charlotte Hilder

Cultural Projects Curator

Mob: +61 436 528 305