Sydney/Eora’s Powerhouse Museum will see a welcome funding boost to the tune of $500m that’ll see extensive renovations and updates to the important building that has stood for 125 years.
After a drawn-out battle to relocate the Powerhouse Museum from Ultimo to Parramatta and sell off the existing site, the NSW Government has done a 180 and is now choosing to cement the future of the hub. The second yet to be build site, located in Parramatta has been confirmed and will focus on science and education, while the new future of the Ultimo site will focus on ‘world-class fashion and design’. Fans of all the key exhibitions won’t be disappointed though with them remaining at the Ultimo site.
The official Powerhouse museum site explains just how important this move is;
The renewal will see Powerhouse Ultimo focus on design and fashion, presenting exhibitions that feature the museum’s significant collections, international exclusive exhibitions and programs that support the design and fashion industries.
The expansion will deliver renewed and expanded exhibition and public space, connecting the Powerhouse Museum to the City by re-orienting the Museum to the Goods Line and connecting to adjacent precincts.
A significant investment in the development of a creative industries precinct will deliver subsidised studio and workspaces at Ultimo for creative industries, delivering a thriving active precinct that is an active contributor to the growing night-time economy.
Deputy lord mayor of Sydney, Jess Scully, was surprised at the investment in arts and culture. “I’m sort of astonished and really excited that they’re seeing how much this contributes to culture and to the economy,” she said adding “It’s so exciting to see a community campaign that worked. People rose up and said no. That they loved the Powerhouse, they believed in its potential. People fought to keep the Powerhouse here and it’s worked. The government has come around, they’ve caught up with the people.
NSW Government Arts Minister Don Harwin says they will need to find a designer for the newly renovated hub but once that’s locked in, will move ahead and ideally, be completed within 12 months of a builder being appointed.
In the leadup to the renovation, the museum will remain open and host both the usual daily activities but also exciting events that have in the past been curated by FBi Radio, Astral People and more.