Blaze e-catalogue - Catalog - Page 56
Lead figure in
During her career with the State Planning
Authority of NSW in the 1960s and 1970s, Caroline
Kelly was the only full-time social anthropologist
employed in any planning authority in Australia.
“Mrs Kelly has a life time of experience
in the way in which human beings
react in society and interact with
their physical environment … it is
of great importance in keeping the
planning work on the right lines and
acceptability by the community.”
State Planning Authority of NSW: Minute Paper, Peter Kacirek,
Chief Planner, to Secretary, ‘Retirement and Future Employment
of Mrs Caroline Kelly’, 21 March 1974, p. 1, Caroline Kelly Papers,
1909–1987, Fryer Library UQ, UQFL489
In the post WWII era, Kelly—former theatre
producer and anthropologist—turned her career
towards Sydney’s rapid population growth and
expansion. In 1968, the NSW Government
introduced the Sydney Region Outline Plan 1970–
2000AD to release ‘on a major scale as rapidly
as possible’, new areas for development.
Four metropolitan growth centres were proposed.
The largest incorporated Campbelltown, Camden
and Appin—‘The New Cities’—and Kelly was
appointed to study its impact on communities.
Working alone from an office in Campbelltown,
Kelly advocated that women, children and young
people—groups not in the ‘mindset’ of town
planners nor private developers—be considered
in the planning. She faced criticism from her
city-based superiors as to her usefulness.
In 1975, The New Cities plan was incorporated
into the Macarthur Growth Centre project under a
State-Commonwealth agreement. Kelly continued
in her role at Campbelltown, until 1981, when she
retired, aged 82.
Photographer unknown, c.1973, Caroline Kelly Papers,
1909–1987, Fryer Library UQ, UQFL489, (detail)
architecture & planning