Regatta Wharf

Date Built: 2000

Architect: Moore Ruble Yudell / Travis McEwen Group

Solander, Edgewater, Watercrest, Eventide. Buildings range from 7 to 15 storeys 143 apartments. Overlooks Pirrama Park, Elizabeth Macarthur Bay, Johnstons Bay. Site of CSR low pressure boiler station and coal silos.

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Regatta Wharf


Coal crane, old wharf, Water Police site Coal crane, old wharf, Water Police site Old wharf Refinery Refinery, coal silos and crane Watercrest, July 1999

In 1984, as industries quit Pyrmont, the State government resolved to redevelop the area, and in 1987 decided that the peninsula needed its own plan. In the same year CSR asked Lend Lease to study the feasibility of redeveloping the whole industrial site.

Many studies ensued: the Pyrmont-Ultimo Heritage Study (1990), a Social Impact Assessment (1991), and a Regional Environmental Plan (1992). In 1993 the Pyrmont-Ultimo Urban Development Plan was approved, and so was a Master Plan for Pyrmont Bay.

Archaeological surveys are the most useful sources for Pyrmont before 1990: they are summed up in the Sydney Harbour Foreshore Authority’s Jacksons Landing Interpretation Strategy, and Jane Bennett’s extraordinary paintings. A few years later John Broadbent complemented these studies with his comprehensive ecological history of the peninsula.

Pyrmont residents were deeply divided: some welcomed development, others were forced to leave. In 1979 opponents formed UPROAR (Ultimo Pyrmont Residents Opposed to Arbitrary Redevelopment) and endured years of consultation (or, in their view, coercion). In August 1992 activists proclaimed the Republic of Pyrmont. In this brilliant protest gesture the republicans issued visas, and publicised their critique of top-down planning, and in particular to Jacksons Landing, and the proposed casino and helipad.

Undeterred, Lend Lease bought the CSR site in 1997, and by April 1999 the Jacksons Landing estate was under construction.  Some buildings were refurbished or their facades retained, but the coal silos and refinery could not be refurbished.  They were scheduled for demolition, making space for waterside apartments (completed in 2000) and a new thoroughfare, Refinery Drive.