Museum move paves way for Powerhouse site redevelopment

An artist’s impression of the proposed Powerhouse Museum in Parramatta.

Sydney’s Powerhouse Museum in a fast-gentrifying pocket of ­Ultimo has emerged as the latest site headed for sale, following a state government decision to relocate the museum to Parramatta.

NSW Premier Mike Baird announced the prominent museum, located within a restored power station, would be moved to a new, purpose-built site on the Parramatta riverfront currently occupied by a David Jones carpark.

The state government plans to offload the Ultimo site, with a design scheme in place for a mixed-use development, with the proceeds to be funnelled into developing the new museum as a state-of-the-art hub for applied arts and ­sciences.

“It will be a site that will be an opportunity to create something great again,” Baird says.

It will be done within the planning ­constraints and again I think there is an opportunity to make something great there

“We are certainly open to how that site is used. I envisage multi-use in many ways, but obviously we need to go through the approp­riate planning processes and look at the best way.”

Located on the fringe of Darling Harbour and within metres of a new wing of the University of Technology, Sydney and a public square known as The Goods Line, the museum is a high-­profile addition to the state government’s list of major ­property assets for sale.

It sits at the heart of a former industrial ­pocket that is quickly giving way to res­idential development with the likes of Lendlease and ­AuswinTWT, which both have major holdings in the area.

“It will be done within the planning ­constraints and again I think there is an opportunity to make something great there,” Baird says.