David Chipperfield, Kengo Kuma and Renzo Piano Among 12 Shortlisted for Sydney Art Gallery Expansion

Art Gallery of NSW. Image © Flickr CC User Jason Starr

Twelve local and international practices have been invited to participate in a two-stage competition for the “ Modern Project,” a $450 million expansion of the Art Gallery of (NSW). Five practices from the shortlist, which also includes SANAA, Tod Williams and Billie Tsien, and Herzog & de Meuron, will move on to produce conceptual designs in the competition’s final round.

“The Sydney Modern vision for expansion and transformation is much more than just a building project,” stated gallery director Dr. Michael Brand. “Through this invited competition the Gallery is seeking ideas that will create an architecturally ambitious, intelligent, sensitive, sustainable and highly functional design. Our site overlooking Sydney Harbor will inspire each of the invited architectural practices, all of whom have extraordinary design skills.”

The invited architectural practices are…

A Better Way for Sydney than the Bilbao Effect

In , a recent discussion about “Cultural Precinct Planning” hosted by the City Government has raised important questions about how the city can compete in the global cultural arms race. However, Sara Anne Best thinks it raised all the wrong questions. Originally posted on Australian Design Review as “Cultural Ribbon or Coastal Connections” this article argues that Sydney, with a culture and tourism industry so focused on outdoor leisure, could find a more unique way of attracting attention which includes the wider metropolitan area more than the usual city centre cultural hub, asking: “With three of the city’s iconic beaches currently undergoing renewal, what is the role of the seaside CBD in the context of Sydney’s cultural identity?” Find out the answer after the break.

3XN Wins Commission to Design 200-Meter Tower in Sydney

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3XN has won an international competition to design the “50 Bridge Street” tower and masterplan for the Quay Quarter (QQS) precinct. Just west of Jørn Utzon’s Opera House, the new tower will feature five rotating glass volumes, each equipped with a multi-level atria and views of the Sydney harbour.

“This project looks at the ‘high rise’ in an entirely new way, from both the inside out and outside in,” said Kim Herforth Nielsen, founding partner and creative director of 3XN.  “Its dynamic, shifted massing maximizes views for all of the building’s users while also creating expansive open spaces that encourage the possibility for interaction, knowledge sharing and vertical connectivity.”

Skylight House / Andrew Burges Architects

© Peter Bennetts

Architects: Andrew Burges Architects
Location: NSW, Australia
Design Team: Andrew Burges, Louise Lovmand, Anna Field
Area: 205.0 sqm
Year: 2013
Photographs: Peter Bennetts

Birchgrove House / Nobbs Radford Architects

© Murray Fredericks

Architects: Nobbs Radford Architects
Location: Sydney NSW,
Area: 221.0 sqm
Year: 2014
Photographs: Murray Fredericks

Grimshaw Unveils Sustainable Glass Office Building in the Heart of Sydney

View from Above. Image Courtesy of Architects and Crone Partners

Sydney‘s historic George Street is about to receive a major facelift with the soon-to-be built 333 George Street, an 18 storey mixed use office and retail tower. Designed by Grimshaw Architects and executive architects Crone Partners for Australian property developer Charter Hall, the minimal glass and steel tower will contrast the historic structures on Sydney’s well-preserved original high street, with a 15 storey 12,500 square metre contemporary office tower tower atop a three storey 2,100 square metre retail podium.

Read on after the break for more on Sydney’s newest tower.

The Dalmeny / Enter Projects

© Brett Boardman

Architects: Enter Projects
Location: NSW,
Photographs: Brett Boardman

Junya Ishigami to Install “Cloud Arch” in Downtown Sydney

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Set to be installed over a set of light rail tracks, Junya Ishigami’s Cloud Arch will soon be one of the biggest landmarks in downtown Sydney.  Commissioned by ’s public art program, City Art, the arch will symbolize ’s qualities of being “Green, Global, and Connected.” Over 50 meters high, it will change shape as viewer’s walk past it. Cloud Arch will act as both a gateway for the pedestrian George Street, and a defining feature of the city.

The Garden Room / Welsh+Major

© Brett Boardman

Architects: Welsh+Major
Location: NSW,
Year: 2013
Photographs: Brett Boardman

Rocks Police Station / Welsh+Major

© Katherine Lu

Architects: Welsh+Major
Location: , NSW,
Year: 2013
Photographs: Katherine Lu

Sydney Plans Large-Scale Urban Renewal Program

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The government of New South Wales have announced plans for Sydney’s largest program of since the 2000 Summer Olympics. The proposal seeks to utilise and regenerate a series of former docklands from the area of Blackwattle Bay, through the Sydney Fish Market, Rozelle Bay and Rozelle Rail Yards, to White Bay Power Station (a protected building).

Make Architects Picked for Sydney’s Wynyard Station Overhaul

Courtesy of

Make Architects have been selected from a shortlist of five practices to renovate the area around Sydney‘s Wynyard Station, beating SOM, Grimshaw, Bates Smart and Ingenhoven to the $1 billion project.

The scheme, called One Carrington Street, involves the renovation of the historic Shell House, creation of a new 27-story, 58,000 square metre office tower, a new eastern transit hall for Wynyard Station including 5,000 square metres of retail space, and a new grand entrance to Wynyard Station from George and Carrington Streets.

More on the scheme after the break

Ansarada / Those Architects

© Brett Boardman

Architects: Those Architects
Location: NSW,
Design Team: Ben Mitchell, Simon Addinall, Justin Smith, Geordie McKenzie, Goran Momircevski
Area: 850 sqm
Year: 2014
Photographs: Brett Boardman

Sydney Illuminates Itself with City-Wide Light Festival

Vivid 2014: The Lighting of the Sails of the Opera House © James Horan

Now through June 9, the city of Sydney will be illuminated by its annual, world-exclusive light festival known as Vivid Sydney. Each night from 6PM until midnight, many of the Harbour City’s most famous landmarks will be transformed into an interactive visual spectacular, paralleled with street side installations, laser shows, (free) live music performances and over 200 creative industry business events.

One of the festival highlights, of course, is the illumination of the Sydney Opera House. Watch as ’s famous white sails are transformed by a series of mind-bending, 3D projections designed by 59 Productions after the break…

Sydney Pushes First-Ever Policy to Promote Culture

© Flickr - User: Jong Soo (Peter) Lee

The City of has requested that 1.6 million square meters of empty commercial and residential space be made available to artists for “creative activities.” The proposed cultural offers over 120 ideas in which the space can be used to enhance ’s reputation as a world renowned creative city. “The City is proud to spend more than $34 million each year to support the arts, culture and creative activity in – but we know it is equally important to create an environment where ideas and imagination can flourish.” More information on the new policy can be found here

Eliza Apartments / Tony Owen Partners

Courtesy of

Architects: Tony Owen Partners
Location: Sydney, NSW,
Architect In Charge: Tony Owen
Year: 2014
Photographs: Courtesy of Tony Owen Partners

Happy Birthday Jørn Utzon

Jørn Utzon in front of the Opera House during construction, 1965. Image Courtesy of Keystone/Getty Images

Pritzker Prize winning architect Jørn Utzon, who died in 2008 aged 90, was the relatively unknown Dane who, on the 29th January 1957, was announced as the winner of the ‘International competition for a national opera house at Bennelong Point, Sydney’. When speaking about this iconic building, Louis Kahn stated that:

The sun did not know how beautiful its light was, until it was reflected off this building.

Unfortunately, Utzon never saw the Sydney Opera House, his most popular work, completed. Learn of his fascinating story, after the break.

MUSE / Woods Bagot

© Peter Bennetts

Architects: Woods Bagot
Location: Macquarie University, Sydney,
Project Team: Georgia Singleton, Alan Duffy, Jo Dane, Kori Todd, Danny Wehbe, Danny Chan, Chang Liu
Area: 900 sqm
Photographs: Peter Bennetts