3 Powerhouse Museums Are Better Than 1

3 Powerhouse Museums Are Better Than 1

$500 Million To Move Powerhouse Exhibits From Building Worth $130 Million

Victor P Taffa

Sydney and New South Wales are being short changed by shifting the Powerhouse Museum to Parramatta and leaving a tiny display at a window shop excuse of a Museum at Ultimo.



Commenting on the release of documents from the Powerhouse Museum following a GIPA (Government Information Public Access) request, Member for Balmain Jamie Parker, said it exposed the government’s agenda as being a big-ticket real estate deal that will short-change museum patrons and tax-payers alike.

“Museum of Applied Arts and Sciences Board of Trustees were clearly given their instructions to follow a plan-by-press release, without expert input, community consultation or any comprehensive cultural strategy.” Mr. Parker said.

“By allowing Infrastructure NSW (New South Wales) to put a financial outcome ahead of cultural priorities, we end up with the destruction of a valued cultural asset. The documents show confusion, secrecy and contradiction in relation to the future location, continuity and purpose of the Powerhouse Museum.”

“Despite the obvious shortfall in funding for a relocated museum, there has been nothing put before the Board that indicates a commitment to fully fund the relocation.”

“During a discussion with the Secretary for Trade and Investment on 4 March 2015, the Board heard that initial estimates of market value ranged from $130 Million to $200 Million.” Mr. Parker said.

Yet Museum experts estimate it will cost at least $500 Million to relocate the Powerhouse and its vast collection of exhibits.

“There is also the appalling waste of public money in selling-off the purpose-built and recently refurbished building in Ultimo.”

“Considering the number of questions and concerns that must have occurred to the Trustees, it is outrageous that the Secretary declared “it would be counterproductive for the Board to oppose the proposed relocation.”

“These documents reveal that the proposed sale is simply a real estate deal that will only deliver an underfunded and inferior version of the current Powerhouse. Together with the community, I remain resolved to oppose this wasteful, destructive plan.” Mr. Parker said.

NSW Member for Balmain Jamie Parker








Smithsonian Institution United States

Founded on 10 August 1846, the Smithsonian Institution is the world’s largest museum, education, and research complex, consisting of

  • 19 museums and galleries,
  • National Zoological Park,
  • 9 research facilities.

Reserve Powerhouse Museum Facility at Castle Hill that has occasionally been opened to the public should be open on a 24/7 basis with new transport services from Parramatta.

Alternatively, Parramatta Jail that has been closed should be converted into a Powerhouse Museum that would complement the Castle Hill Powerhouse.

There is no Government who has the money to build a Museum with floor space large enough for all the exhibits from both Ultimo and Castle Hill combined and as such should simply leave the Ultimo Powerhouse Museum alone.

Smithsonian Institution Building









Appointment Of A Powerhouse Promotions Director

A Promotions Director for all 3 Powerhouse Museums needs to be made by the State Government.

  • Powerhouse Museum Castle Hill
  • Powerhouse Museum Parramatta
  • Powerhouse Museum Ultimo

Powerhouse Museum is a very strong brand name and must be promoted to maximise tourism in Sydney, Interstate and Overseas.

  • Smithsonian Institution in the United States has 19 Museums and Galleries.
  • Sydney will soon have 3 Powerhouse Museums.

What if Sydney built a 4th Powerhouse Museum after Parramatta is opened?

It would appear that Sydney is not promoting Powerhouse Museums effectively enough in comparison with the Art Gallery of New South Wales or State Library as examples.

As a Taxi Driver in Sydney Editor Victor P Taffa was always mindful of tourists wanting information on points of interest.

One only has to see the numbers of tourist coaches lined up in Harris Street, Ultimo outside the Powerhouse Museum Ultimo to see what I am talking about.

There is nothing to say that Sydney isn’t big enough to have more than 3 Powerhouse Museums that have a coordinated approach to Promotion.

Powerhouse Museum Ultimo was opened at current premises in 1988 as a Bicentennial of Sydney gift.

Powerhouse Ultimo was the Powerhouse for Tramway Electricity Generation.

That story alone should not be hidden.

Along George Street, Sydney during Light Rail construction works historic photos of Trams on George Street have been placed on large boards for people to see.

So why hide the history behind the Powerhouse name?

Why are we trying to be politically correct about the Powerhouse name and history when we are building Light Rail and Editor Victor P Taffa has put forward an extensive submission to deliver Parramatta-North Ryde Light Rail and not via Carlingford Railway Line with the Berejiklian Government?

In order to maximise visitor traffic to all 3 Powerhouse Museums a Director of Promotions should be appointed to oversee Promotions for all 3 Powerhouse Museums.

On a 24/7 basis there should also be a Bus and later on a Light Rail service between Powerhouse Museum Parramatta and Powerhouse Museum Castle Hill.

Powerhouse Museum Castle Hill has always been a reserve facility however exhibits should be taken to the new Powerhouse Museum at Parramatta to free up space and place exhibits on Public Show for the first time.

Powerhouse Museum Castle Hill can then be promoted in a more effective means than at present.