21 Harris Street

A modern office complex designed by architects Bates Smart and constructed by Milligan Group, 2018-2020. Site of CSR engineering workshops.

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21 Harris Street

Overview

21 Harris Street in 2012 Governor General Lord Gowrie talks to a CSR employee 1940 Governor General Lord Gowrie watching 18lb bomb shell cases being made 1940 Governor General Lord Gowrie being shown how 18lb bomb shell cases are made 1940 Governor General Lord Gowrie talks to a CSR employee 1940 Pyrmont houses c1939 Engineering workshops 1990s Engineering workshops 1990s Engineering workshops 1990s

The block at 21 Harris Street, on the corner of Bowman Street was briefly ­a site of strategic importance. During the Second World War, Australia also needed war material. As CSR engineers and chemists responded to this crisis, houses were removed from the site and engineering workshops built, to produce gun barrels, shell casings, Verey pistols and gas masks.

After the war these facilities reverted to the production and maintenance of refining and distilling machinery. Nearby houses were razed, to make room for the cars that most employees now owned. These workshops were demolished when Bowman Street became a thoroughfare during the creation of Jacksons Landing.

The site was zoned “commercial”, which discouraged purchasers until 2018, when the Milligan Group bought it, and began to build Workshop, a modern office complex designed by architects Bates Smart. Milligan aspired “to create the best campus-style creative building in Sydney and to respond to the wider needs of the Pyrmont community.” Nine stories high, with three more underground levels, Workshop has an open atrium providing natural light.  Its leasable area is 18,888 square metres with seven levels of commercial office space.

In 2019 Milligan sold the property to the Singapore-based Suntec Group for about $300 million.  The building was completed in 2021.