A NSW Government website

Precinct Development

Macquarie Street East Precinct

Our vision

Macquarie Street East – where Sydney’s rich Aboriginal and modern history comes to life and arts and culture thrive.

Be Educated. Be Entertained. Be Surprised.

Steeped in history, Macquarie Street East will tell the cultural, civic and heritage story of Sydney to a global audience.

Established institutions in heritage-listed buildings operating alongside new cultural attractions will deliver experiences that entertain and educate day and night.

Open and accessible, Macquarie Street East will embrace and enhance the city’s arts and cultural offering.

About Macquarie Street East

The NSW Government is transforming one of Sydney’s iconic historical and culturally significant heritage precincts, Macquarie Street East (MSE), into a vibrant, connected and people-friendly arts, cultural and civic destination.

This area has been home to the Gadigal people for tens of thousands of years and is a place of historical and cultural significance for Aboriginal people.

Located within the national heritage-listed Governor’s Domain and Civic Precinct, MSE today forms the crossroads of Sydney’s cultural and civic spine.

The precinct situated between Sydney’s CBD and The Domain contains a collection of some of Australia’s most significant institutions and heritage buildings:

  • Chief Secretary’s Building
  • State Library of NSW
  • Parliament of NSW
  • The Mint
  • Hospital Road Courthouse
  • Registrar General’s Building
  • Sydney Hospital and Sydney Eye Hospital
  • the World Heritage-Listed Hyde Park Barracks, and
  • The Australian Museum.

What’s happening now?

A program of early works that will begin the long-term transformation includes:

  • the creation of a new public square on the northern side of the Registrar General’s Building, providing a gateway to The Domain, which will be named in honour of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II as a tribute to her magnificent life
  • the removal of now underutilised, modern additions to the historic Registrar General’s Building to restore it to its original 1913 character and give it a new lease of life while protecting its integrity and original character
  • the renewal and improvement of key pedestrian connections throughout the precinct, inviting access into some of Sydney’s most historic institutions
  • the activation of spaces with temporary events and public art installations, to bring entertainment and life into the heart of the city.

While precinct planning continues, the RGB has temporarily been transformed into a creative hub, RGB Creative, for some of the state’s brightest arts, screen and creative talents to rehearse in, collaborate and develop new talent.

Background

A NSW Government-commissioned precinct review of Macquarie Street East, led by former Prime Minister Paul Keating and former Greater Sydney Commission Chief Commissioner, Lucy Turnbull, made recommendations for the heritage buildings and spaces in Macquarie Street East, including the Registrar General’s Building, to showcase the city’s cultural and social history.

The review found the precinct currently has unrealised potential and is not welcoming to either visitors or Sydneysiders. It lacks vibrancy and connectivity and is difficult to navigate.

In April 2022, the NSW Government approved funding to kick-off the first phase of permanent precinct transformation.

Contact us
precinctdevelopment@dpie.nsw.gov.au

Please email us for more information or to register for updates.