Redevelopment Of The Australian Museum Officially Underway

Redevelopment Of The Australian Museum Officially Underway

New South Wales Minister for the Arts Don Harwin

Architects Appointed For Major Redevelopment At The Australian Museum

Victor P Taffa

Major redevelopment of the Australian Museum is officially underway after architects were appointed to deliver the project, announced today by Minister for the Arts Don Harwin.

COX Architecture, in collaboration with Neeson Murcutt Architects, have been selected to tender this project as the Museum enters into the next exciting phase of its development.

“This redevelopment, which has been named ‘Project Discover’, will convert museum storage space into state-of-the-art exhibition facilities and increase the museum’s capacity to host ‘blockbuster’ international touring exhibitions.” Minister Harwin said.

“This is a milestone project that will ensure that one of the State’s most significant heritage and cultural institutions continues to flourish.”

Project Discover will also provide dedicated school group access, amenities, expanded and upgraded educational facilities, a new members’ lounge, a new retail outlet and a café.

“Appointment of highly-experienced architects for the redevelopment is an exciting step in the Museum’s transformation and unfolding story as one of the nation’s most important cultural institutions.” Australian Museum Director and CEO Kim McKay AO said.

Immediately after the completion of Project Discover, the Australian Museum will celebrate its revitalised and expanded facilities by hosting the largest Tutankhamun exhibition to ever leave Egypt expected to attract more than 800,000 visitors during its 6-month visit in 2021.

“It is fitting that completion of the museum’s new international touring exhibition hall will be celebrated with an exhibition revealing the splendour of one of Ancient Egypt’s most famous Kings.” Minister Harwin said.

Minister Harwin said COX and Neeson Murcutt had collaborated frequently over the past 3 years in a powerful pooling of skills and knowledge.

“COX will bring experience in the design and delivery of award-winning public projects, including museums.” Minister Harwin said.

“Neeson Murcutt will bring an intimate knowledge of the museum through the 2016 Australian Institute of Architects Public Architecture Award winning Crystal Hall entrance. Both practices have a reputation for design excellence.”

The Australian Museum History

The Australian Museum is located at the corner of William Street and College Street and originally known as the Colonial Museum or Sydney Museum.

The Australian Museum was renamed in June 1836 by a sub-committee meeting, when it was resolved during an argument that it should be renamed the ‘Australian Museum’.

Establishment of a museum had first been planned in 1821 by the Philosophical Society of Australasia.

The Australian Museum was founded in 1827 by Earl Bathurst, then Secretary of State for the Colonies.

First location of the Australian Museum in 1827 was a room in the offices of the Colonial Secretary. Over the following 30 years it had several other locations in Sydney, until it moved into its current home in 1849.

Sandstone building on the corner of College and Park Streets was designed by New South Wales Colonial Architect James Barnet and opened to the public in May 1857.


Heritage Listed Museum Railway Station

NSW Minister for The Arts Don Harwin











Museum Railway Station

Museum Railway Station on Sydney’s city circle railway line was named after The Australian Museum and opened on 20 December 1926.

Museum Railway Station is located at the southern end of Hyde Park and a short walk from The Australian Museum.

Museum Railway Station is heritage listed.