A $25 million state-of-the-art creative hub featuring dance, theatre, music, film and visual arts facilities will be built in the heart of the city following an agreement between the City of Sydney and property developer Greenland Australia.
An Australian first, the hub will span 2,000 square metres over five storeys, and will be located in what is set to be Sydney’s tallest residential tower at the old Sydney Water site on Bathurst Street.
It will feature architect-designed rehearsal spaces, customised studios, offices and production rooms, and a live/work apartment to be made available for a creative fellowship program.
The announcement comes just weeks after the City launched its first-ever cultural policy, which proposes more than 120 actions for boosting culture and creativity in Sydney.
Lord Mayor Clover Moore said the agreement set an exciting precedent for the inclusion of world-class cultural facilities in private developments.
“The lack of affordable workspace for artists, designers and other creative practitioners is one of the biggest barriers to Sydney’s development as a global destination for creativity and culture,” the Lord Mayor said.
“Our new cultural policy commits us to tackling this head on by working with businesses, retailers and property developers to unlock and create space for artists and our growing creative industries.
“We’re delighted to partner with Greenland Australia on this landmark project that will bring significant economic, cultural and community benefits to Sydney.
“We hope this will be the first of many agreements leading to the inclusion of much-needed creative space in both new and existing developments across the city.”
The City has signed a 99 year lease on the creative hub via a voluntary planning agreement with Greenland Australia.
Facilities will include sound-proofed rooms for music rehearsals, studios with sprung timber floors for dancers and actors, media and editing suites for filmmakers and new media artists, and wet-dry studios for visual artists.
In addition to the hub, the $440 million, 67-storey development will feature 490 residential apartments and ground-floor retail space, while a 173-room hotel will be built on a neighbouring site fronting Pitt Street.
The creative industries sector is one of the fastest-growing in the City of Sydney, with a 2012 study showing that nearly 1,900 creative businesses employ more than 35,000 people across the local government area.
Award-winning actor, producer and writer Claudia Karvan said the creative hub was an exciting initiative that would make a big difference to Sydney’s creative community.
“Affordable space in Sydney is scarce, so it’s fantastic to learn about the City’s new cultural policy and its plans to unlock affordable work spaces in Sydney.
“It is essential to give local artists and creative teams spaces where they can progress their ideas – facilities like these are the building blocks for Sydney’s future creative life.”
The development is expected to open in 2018.
For more information, contact City of Sydney Senior Media Adviser Keeley Irvin.
Phone 0448 005 718 or email [email protected]