Construction of oil tanks View looking south 1942

Construction of oil tanks View looking north 1942

The project site Construction of the Eastern Distributor in front of State Library of NSW c1961

The project site Aerial view of the Gallery c1980

The project site The Gallery's northern facade c1990

The project site Aerial view of the Gallery 2015

The project site View of oil tank roof 2017

The project site

The Sydney Modern Project will increase the utilisation and help reinvigorate the site to the north of the existing Gallery building currently comprising two grassed concrete platforms – a land bridge (constructed between 1997 and 1999) over the Eastern Distributor and a concrete roof over two disused World War II oil tanks. Adaptive re-use of the oil tanks will enable public access to a significant state asset, for the first time.

Historic photos show extensive excavation of the site, undertaken to enable construction of the Eastern Distributor following construction of the Cahill Expressway through the Royal Botanic Gardens and Domain.

Public access across the entire site will be maintained day and night. Revitalised landscaping reintroducing native species and incorporating outdoor art will improve public amenity.

By building to the north of the existing Gallery we are preserving one of our two 19th-century facades, protecting our heritage trees, and retaining the Domain’s much-used playing fields.

Find out more about the history of the existing building