By DALLAS SHERRINGHAM
THE biggest public building project in NSW since the construction of the Opera House in the 1960s is taking shape on the banks of the Parramatta River.
The mighty Powerhouse Museum will be the biggest tourist drawcard in Western Sydney when it is completed next year. It will also be the biggest Museum in NSW, ranking alongside the world rated War Memorial in Canberra.
Now, the concrete slab has been poured and the first of 12,000 tonnes of steel has been installed in a major milestone for the construction on the site to be officially known as structural Powerhouse Parramatta.
Premier Dominic Perrottet said the Parramatta Powerhouse would become a Western Sydney landmark and the cultural institution the region had been crying out for.
“It took the long term economic plan of the NSW Government to transform an idea like the Powerhouse Parramatta from a thought bubble to a reality, that will be cherished by generations of Western Sydney residents,” Mr Perrottet said.
“This project isn’t just creating a world-class cultural institution but is also creating jobs, with more than $200min contracts awarded to NSW businesses by construction partner Lendlease.”
Lendlease has set a target of 70% of the construction workforce to be Western Sydney locals.
In addition $75m in contracts from the project were awarded to local businesses..
Infrastructure Minister Rob Stokes said contractors like Azzurri Concrete were the foundation of this project, with the Wetherill Park business completing a 1000-cubic-metre concrete pour – the equivalent of 160 concrete trucks in one day.
The Museum will hold one of the most extraordinary collections in Australia including the arts, design, science and technology. It will bring two million visitors to Western Sydney each year.
State of the art collection
The state-of-the-art exhibition spaces will host international travelling exhibitions, bringing the very best of the world to Parramatta.
Member for Parramatta Geoff Lee said Powerhouse Parramatta was the biggest investment in arts and culture since the Sydney Opera House and would be the cultural icon Western Sydney deserved.
In an Australian-first all cranes on site are now powered by renewable diesel – directly contributing to a reduction in emissions and helping achieve greater sustainability outcomes without any impact on productivity.
Powerhouse Parramatta will be a six star green star building with net zero operations from the day it opens, with the project on track for construction completion in late 2024.