Government demolition of White Bay power station would be an act of vandalism

Thursday 19 November 2020

Yesterday’s announcement from Dominic Perrottet and Andrew Constance that they intend to demolish the historic White Bay Power Station is an obscene threat which, if carried out, would constitute a crime against the heritage of Sydney.

This landmark industrial site is heritage listed and is of enormous heritage and historic value. Any attempt to destroy the Power Station, will be met with maximum resistance, including through the Courts if necessary.

The Treasurer told Parliament yesterday that the Power Station is a “shocking building” that “should be knocked down like the Sirius Building”.

This absurd statement demonstrates a deep ignorance of Sydney’s history and of the Government’s obligations under planning legislation.

In 2016 the Government themselves announced that the Power Station and the surrounding Bays Precinct would be transformed into a high tech jobs precinct and a world leading example of urban renewal.

They promised to create Sydney’s own “silicon valley” at White Bay but now intend to deliver only a pile of rubble by the sea.

The White Bay Power Station was in fact Google’s preferred location for their Australian Headquarters, a proposal which didn’t proceed only because of the Government’s stubborn refusal to provide any public transport into the precinct.

In recent years Government has received dozens of proposals, from some of the Australia’s most reputable architects, for adaptive reuse of the Power Station, which could be converted for a variety of commercial, artistic and community uses.

White Bay Power Station was also the film set for Baz Lurman’s the Great Gatsby.

Inner West Council will fight alongside our local community to protect this unique site from the Government’s thuggery and for the adaptive reuse of the Power Station instead.

For media enquiries, contact Bill Hawker, Mayoral Media Officer, 9392 5685,

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Page last updated: 30 Nov 2020