Free, No Booking Required


Fri 25 Mar
12:30 pm – 2:00 pm


MPavilion, Melbourne VIC 3004, Australia

Bunjil Place, City of Casey Photo Credit: John Gollings Gallery

Good design – is excellent for local Government Past Event

Presented by OVGA

Several Local Governments are investing in creating a culture of good design aiming at better built environment outcomes. They are grappling with managing growth well and what is needed to achieve more distinctive places.
The OVGA supports Local Government in the development of policies and processes. This includes two guidance documents about good Local Government procurement, and a guide to design review.
The City of Ballarat, City of Greater Geelong and City of Casey are some of the fastest growing and most diverse urban areas with some of Victoria’s most intact heritage. They are collaborating to establish design excellence in their jurisdictions. The OVGA will lead a discussion with key local government design leaders to highlight how they are supporting good design, design thinking and creative city strategies. This will include:
Dr Fiona Gray – City of Ballarat
Jonathan Daley – City of Geelong
Yogeshwari Biju – City of Casey
Jill Garner AM – Chair / Victorian Government Architect


Jill Garner, Chair, Victorian Government Architect

Jill Garner, Victorian Government Architect. Jill took the helm of the Office of the Victorian Government Architect in 2015, stepping into the role as a public advocate for architecture and design after more than twenty years in practice. As an architect, her practice – Garner Davis – has received numerous industry awards for delivering sensitive, crafted public and private work. As a design advisor and advocate in government, she strongly promotes the value of contextual, integrated design thinking and a collaborative approach across design disciplines.

Jill has taught at both RMIT and Melbourne University in architectural design, theory and contemporary history; she is one of the first graduates of the innovative practice-based Masters by Design at RMIT; she is a past board member and examiner for the Architects Registration Board Victoria; in 2018 she chaired the national Committee for the Venice Architecture Biennale. She is a Life Fellow of the Australian Institute of Architects and in 2021 she was appointed a Member of the Order of Australia, recognizing her distinguished service to architecture , education and professional associations.

Jonathan Daley, City of Geelong

Jonathan Daly is the manager of Urban Design and Heritage, and City Design Champion, at the City of Greater Geelong. He has more than 20 years international experience in urban design, planning and architecture, in both the private and public sectors. Jonathan was the Founding director of the Urban Behaviour Lab, applying behavioural science in the built environment. He received his PhD from the University of Melbourne, winning the John Grice Prize (Architecture) for research excellence.

Fiona Gray, City of Ballarat

Dr. Fiona Gray is an architect, urban researcher and local government leader. In her role as Executive Manager Catalyst Project at the City of Ballarat, she is responsible for leading an ambitious design-led agenda for strategic urban renewal sites and major regional infrastructure projects across Ballarat. Fiona is also an Adjunct Associate Professor at the Centre for Regional and Rural Futures at Deakin University and an advisor on the Heritage Advocacy Committee for National Trust of Australia (Victoria).

Yogeshwari Biju, City of Casey

Yoge is an Architect and Urban Designer, and leads the Urban Design Unit at City of Casey. She is a design champion with a mission to create design excellence within local communities. A gender equity champion with genuine interest in prioritising the safety and wellbeing of women and girls in the design of our built environments. Yoge has been instrumental in the establishment of the the Casey Design Excellence Program and has been driving the design discussion with internal and external stakeholders in the SE Region to realise the bold & brave vision of Casey becoming ‘A City of Design’.

Bronwen Hamilton

Bronwen is an urban designer with over 20 years experience in urban strategy and design. Currently she works for the City of Melbourne as Design Manager and Principal Urban Designer. Her experience working for Federal and State government and private practice provides a broad appreciation of policy and development from a range of perspectives. She has worked across the spectrum from policy development, structure planning and strategic infrastructure implementation to precinct and detailed design guidance and critique. In this way she has harnessed the ability to relate to stakeholders with diverse interests, and draw together divergent views with a focus on high quality public places. Bronwen has experience working in several cities in Australia, Vietnam and in the UK.

Munir Vahanvati

Munir is an urban designer with more than 15 years of experience in local government and private sector. He has been responsible for setting up the Urban Design team at Moreland City Council and developing innovative programs and strategies including the multi award winning Moreland Apartment Design Code, Moreland Parklet Program and the Virtual Moreland Project. Currently, he is working as a City Designer at Darebin City Council responsible for shaping and implementing Darebin’s Design Excellence program to create a culture of good design and improve design quality for public and private projects.