Next steps for Feasibility Study into possible SBS relocation

The Albanese Government has today released the terms of reference and announced the Steering Committee for the Feasibility Study into the possible relocation of the Sydney-based headquarters and studios of SBS to Western Sydney.

The Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development, Communications and the Arts is leading the feasibility study, in close consultation with SBS. The feasibility study will:

  • examine the business case, benefits, and costs of relocating SBS facilities from Artarmon to Western Sydney;
  • assess the benefits of providing a co-located multi-purpose space for content creation and public use; and
  • incorporate a competitive bidding process between local government areas to choose an optimal relocation site.

To oversee the feasibility study, a Steering Committee has been established, to be chaired by Mr Mike Mrdak AO, former Secretary of the then-federal Communications and the Arts, and Infrastructure Departments. Mr Mrdak brings a wealth of experience to this role.

The Steering Committee will also comprise Ms Daryl Karp AM, Director and CEO of the Australian National Maritime Museum, Mr Mark Ramsey, Chief Executive Officer of Vecor Technologies, the SBS Managing Director, Mr James Taylor, and Ms Pauline Sullivan from the Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development, Communications and the Arts.

The Committee will examine the issues in close detail and a preliminary finding on whether or not relocation is feasible is anticipated in late 2023.

If relocation is found to be feasible on a preliminary basis, a public Expression of Interest process will then be conducted in late 2023/early 2024, with the results expected in 2024.
Any decision on relocation is ultimately a matter for the SBS Board, taking into account the Board’s role, duties and obligations under the Special Broadcasting Service Act 1991 and the Public Governance Performance and Accountability Act 2013.
Members of the Steering Committee have been appointed until 31 August 2024.
For more information on the feasibility study, including the governance and probity arrangements, and Committee members’ biographies, visit:

Quotes attributable to Minister for Communications, the Hon Michelle Rowland MP:

"The Terms of Reference and Steering Committee announced today will provide strong governance, expertise and leadership to explore whether a possible move of SBS to Western Sydney stacks up". 

“While a number of parties have already indicated they are interested in lodging an expression of interest for hosting SBS in Western Sydney, it’s important that all relevant factors are identified and considered.
“Having the right mix of independent experts with leadership, infrastructure, finance, property and broadcasting expertise on the Steering Committee is critical to ensuring the project is well-managed.
“Their insight and findings will ensure SBS Board and Government decision-making is well-informed and I look forward to receiving the preliminary findings of the feasibility study later this year.”