An urban planner will head the National Capital Authority in Canberra, just five months after taking up a new role in local government in Melbourne.
Malcolm Snow will fill the position for the Australian government's planning and cultural agency, which has sat vacant for half of 2013.
In August the City of Port Phillip municipality announced Mr Snow was its new general manager of environment and planning. Before that job he spent 19 months at the Victorian Urban Renewal Authority, providing urban planning and design services.
Mr Snow has won the Australian Award for urban design three times.
A spokesman said he would begin working in Canberra on Monday, January 13.
Mr Snow has worked in government and private sector positions in Australia, Britain and Asia, and led significant urban planning and city redevelopment projects in Melbourne, Adelaide and Brisbane.
In a statement, Assistant Minister for Infrastructure and Regional Development Jamie Briggs said Mr Snow was accomplished in business and project management, urban planning, design and land development, giving him good experience for his new role.
''He has also held senior positions at national consulting firm Urbis and the Victorian Urban Renewal Authority.
''I look forward to working closely with Mr Snow in delivering the National Capital Plan and ensuring Canberra's place as one of national significance,'' Mr Briggs said.
In recent years the NCA has been short of money and undergoing restructuring after several inquiries.
Gary Rake was in the chief executive's role for almost five years, picking up a reduced workforce after the former Rudd government cut staff by 40 per cent.
The authority's budget and projects have continued to be cut, and many recommendations from inquiries into its role and to overcome duplication on planning with the ACT government's planning authority, have yet to be implemented.
Having responsibility for a large estate, which includes Lake Burley Griffin and the Parliamentary Triangle, the NCA received a one-off payment in 2010 of $1.5 million to plug its maintenance budget of $17 million after a warning that lives were at risk.
Mr Snow's term will be five years. Chief planner Andrew Smith has been acting in the role.