Last year, the New South Wales government decided not to relocate the Powerhouse Museum in Ultimo to Parramatta, opting instead to build a second Powerhouse in western Sydney.
The NSW government has now pledged half a billion dollars to transform the Powerhouse Museum. The project involves expanding exhibition and public spaces, and connecting the museum to Ultimo.
As part of the $500 million makeover, the industrial science museum will invest in developing a creative industries precinct in Ultimo with subsidised studio and workspaces.
“The renewal of our institution will deliver two world-class museums – with a design and fashion focus at Powerhouse Ultimo and our flagship museum focused on science and technology, Powerhouse Parramatta,” said chief executive Lisa Havilah.
Powerhouse Ultimo expansion plans
“This visionary investment will see the expansion of our exhibition spaces as well as renewal of our historic exhibition spaces,” Havilah continued.
“We will create a vibrant public square beside the Goods Line, and creative industries workspaces that will become home for Australian designers.”
The Powerhouse Museum in Ultimo will remain open while planning for a design competition led by Create Infrastructure and the Powerhouse Museum takes place.
“Over the past three decades the Powerhouse Museum in Ultimo has inspired thousands of visitors with one of the world’s most important collections across applied arts and sciences,” said Museum Trust president, Peter Collins.
Powerhouse Parramatta moves forward
“This renewal will pave the way for generations to come to experience even more of our 500,000-strong collection through Australia’s leading museum of design and fashion in Ultimo and the new home of science and technology at our flagship, Powerhouse Parramatta.”
More information about the Powerhouse Parramatta was revealed late last year, showing plans for column-free exhibition spaces across 18,000 square metres of space.
NSW premier Gladys Berejiklian and the state’s treasurer Dominic Perrottet described the Powerhouse Parramatta as the “jewel-in-the-crown” for the Museum of Applied Arts and Sciences.