A plan to revitalize Sydney’s underused and neglected ‘civic backbone’ by transforming it into an arts and culture district has been unveiled by the government of New South Wales.
One of Sydney’s most famous streets, Macquarie Street is home to the Parliament of NSW, Martin Place, the State Library of NSW, the Mint, Hyde Park Barracks and more.
It also borders the Royal Botanic Garden in Sydney.
NSW Treasurer Dominic Perrottet said the street is full of history, but it deserves a makeover.
He ordered a review of the use of the compound, led by former Prime Minister Paul Keating and former Sydney Lord Mayor Lucy Turnbull, which concluded it could become a vibrant destination, in a report released Thursday.
“Macquarie Street is home to many heritage buildings and historic spaces that should be enjoyed and shared with as many people as possible, but right now hardly anyone visits outside of office hours,” Perrottet said.
“This is an opportunity to be innovative and to rethink how these spaces could highlight the cultural and social history of our city and attract visitors day and night.
The review found that public recognition of the historical significance of the enclosure is lacking, as is public use of spaces and buildings.
He recommends improving accessibility and links to the rest of the CBD, and creating a unified vision or brand for the region.
“The report provides a plan for the true consolidation of the historic triangle between the NSW Art Gallery, the former Registrar General’s building and the State Library along the axis of Macquarie Street,” said Mr. Keating.
The review recommends that the renaissance of the enclosure be completed in time for the 250th anniversary of the arrival of the First Fleet on January 26, 2028.