2022 Hobart City Council elector poll

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 Update, 11:13am Saturday 29 October - Final results

  The Tasmanian Electoral Commission has been requested by the Hobart City Council to conduct an elector poll. The poll will be held concurrently with the 2022 council elections. Information and a supplementary ballot paper will be included in postal voting packs sent to Hobart City Council electors from Monday 3 October.


The City of Hobart held a public meeting on Wednesday 11 May 2022 in response to a petition regarding the relocation of the University of Tasmania's (UTAS) Sandy Bay campus. Following the public meeting, a petition was submitted to the Council seeking an elector poll.

In accordance with the Local Government Act 1993 (“the Act”), as the petition included over 1,000 signatures from electors in the Hobart municipal area, the Council is required to conduct an elector poll. The Act provides that an elector poll held in conjunction with an election is to be conducted by the Electoral Commissioner.

As the substance of the elector poll primarily involves entities independent of the Hobart City Council:

  • the University of Tasmania was invited to provide preliminary content for the FOR case.
  • "Save UTAS Campus" was invited to provide preliminary content for the AGAINST case.
The Electoral Commissioner has then modified this information to provide a consistent structure across both cases.

Elector poll question

Do you support the University of Tasmania’s proposal to relocate the Sandy Bay campus into Hobart’s central business district?

Reasons to vote FOR the proposal to relocate

The University must invest in new facilities so it can provide the best possible education and research for current and future generations.

Relocating into the central business district (CBD) will deliver contemporary, state-of-the-art facilities for students and staff, make higher education more accessible to more Tasmanians and secure the University’s financial future.

The relocation of the Sandy Bay Campus will also:

  • Place students closer to work opportunities. The average age of UTAS students attending campus in Hobart is 26 years1 and 8 out of 10 UTAS students are working as well as studying2.
  • Unify the southern campus. Today, 4 in 10 Hobart-based students already study in the city1.
  • Add vibrancy to the CBD. The campus will revitalise long-empty buildings and vacant spaces.
  • Support local businesses. Staff are forecast to spend $15 million a year3.
  • Reduce Hobart traffic by 425 cars a day4. Staff and students based in the city drive less and new CBD parking spaces will be added.
  • Help green the city. New parks will be incorporated into the facilities.
  • Allow much greater community access. University facilities like libraries and event spaces will be centrally located and open to the public.
  • Improve environmental sustainability. A campus that is easier to access, constructed with less concrete and uses less energy is a good thing for our climate.

Saying YES to the University city move will help every student and staff member be their best and help make our wonderful city of Hobart even stronger. For more information supporting the proposal visit www.utas.edu.au/southern-transformation.

1 UTAS Student Record System
2 Calculated from the “Commencing” and “Lost” students’ surveys
3 Calculation using the Urbis Office Workers Survey
4 Calculation based on reported behaviour change between city-based staff & students compared to Sandy Bay-based staff & students (2021 UTAS staff & student travel behaviour survey)

Reasons to vote AGAINST the proposal to relocate

The University’s Sandy Bay campus, gifted by the Tasmanian government, is a major student drawcard. Sandy Bay offers free student parking, public transport links, proximity to sport grounds, natural green spaces and has room for expansion.

A University report5 shows a majority of Sandy Bay buildings are sustainable and can be refurbished.

The relocation of the Sandy Bay Campus will also:

  • Leave UTAS without a true campus, accessible parking or research facilities.
  • Not improve student accessibility.
  • Be bad for CBD businesses as customers lose parking and access and will face years of disruption due to construction, street closures and building delays.
  • See the development of CBD green spaces that consist of pot plants and synthetic grass.
  • Reduce UTAS investment in the local economy that could be gained through focusing on educational excellence and refurbishing Sandy Bay campus to attract students.
  • With $400 million in managed investments and over $100 million of CBD properties, UTAS is currently in a strong financial position.

Under UTAS’s Sandy Bay Masterplan released in 2021:

  • There will be around 90 buildings, with some current buildings extended to 8 storeys high.
  • There will be a deficit of around 3000 carparks which will cause major traffic congestion.
  • Of the 2700 apartments built, none will be public or affordable housing.
  • New developments will destroy native bush and heavily impact parkland and established trees.

Say NO to save our CBD, our city and our university.

For more information against the proposal visit www.saveutascampus.com.

5 The Sandy Bay Building Condition and Functionality Report (July 2018)

The ballot paper

The information above is printed in the back of the candidate statements booklet contained in each Hobart City Council elections ballot pack. A supplementary ballot paper (attached to the lord and deputy lord mayor ballot paper) is included, presenting the question:

Do you support the University of Tasmania’s proposal to relocate the Sandy Bay campus into Hobart’s central business district?

Electors are asked to respond by writing "YES" or "NO" in the box provided. The completed ballot paper is to be included with the councillor, lord mayor and deputy lord mayor ballot papers in the sealed and signed ballot paper envelope.

Related information

Voting information

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Your candidates

Candidates by council. Includes candidate statements...

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Information for candidates

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Local government areas

Map of Tasmania's local government (municipal) boundaries.

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Previous elections

Results of previous elections.
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