Sydney’s Central Station Roof, NSW

Sydney’s Central Station Roof Development, Australian Building Project, NSW Station Architecture Photos

Sydney’s Central Station News

9 Sep 2020

Sydney’s Central Station Roof

Design: Woods Bagot in collaboration with John McAslan + Partners

Location: Sydney, New South Wales, Australia

First look: The new landmark roof which will transform Sydney’s Central Station

Sydney Central Station Roof NSW
The vaulted roof in the fabrication yard, New South Wales, Australia – photo © Cath Bowen Rusty Goat Media

The new 2,240 sqm span vaulted roof at Central Station has been revealed to the public for the first time with installation underway as part of the city’s new Sydney Metro.

The roof rises to 16m above the northern concourse becoming a landmark covered public space which will be the centre-piece of the refurbished station.

Constructed by Laing O’Rourke and designed in partnership with Woods Bagot and John McAslan + Partners, the lightweight canopy will dramatically over-sail the heart of the transformed station, joining new and old to create a recognisable place and represent the heritage of Central Station to the people of Sydney.

Sydney Central Station Roof NSW
The new roof at Sydney’s Central Station – photo © Connie Klonis

The design vision by the architectural team was to create a new public space for the people of Sydney as John McAslan + Partners achieved at King’s Cross Station in London. Conceived as an orienting piece of architecture that makes sense of and simplifies the wayfinding to all parts of the station from the grand concourse – joining intercity trains, suburban trains and Light Rail to the new metro.

Design features, structural elements and materials add to the legibility of circulation, making moving between these travel modes more intuitive, simplifying access for all and enhancing the overall passenger journey through beautifully finished spaces.

Sydney Central Station Roof NSW
Sydney Central Station View – photo © Woods Bagot and John McAslan + Partners

All elements of the new design encourage smoother flows of 500,000 travellers expected daily across the station and through to the new Sydney Metro platforms, 27m underground.

The form of the new roof has been derived from the vaulted profiles which are already a dominant feature of the existing heritage buildings. It also frames views to Central Station’s heritage clock tower.

The materials have been selected to compliment the heritage of the station, built in 1906. The exterior is the same natural aluminium finish as the historic grand concourse roof and will, in time, patina with age, blending the new and old together. A dominant feature of the roof are the skylights. Shaped like kites, they admit daylight into the new concourse, helping cement it as a clear orienting space joining all the parts of the station together.

Sydney Central Station Roof NSW
Kite-shaped skylights in the new roof at Sydney’s Central Station – photo © Cath Bowen Rusty Goat Media

John Prentice, Principal, Woods Bagot, comments:

“This one-in-100-year opportunity to revitalise Central Station comes with great responsibility and humility. In giving the station an entirely new functional and experiential vibe the bold 21st century architectural interventions must uphold the bold Edwardian railway architecture of the original terminus.”

“Customer centered thinking is one hallmark of the design process to transform Sydney’s Central Station into a place like no other. Generous, distinctive and memorable, Central Station’s new underground concourse will eliminate the ‘travel trudge’. Our design approach has been to walk in the shoes of the customer every step of the way to create a truly great experience.”

“Finding your way around intuitively in uncluttered and beautifully finished spaces has been a major design focus. Customers will freely and effortlessly move through the space, know where they are at any time, and change easily between trains, buses, light rail and the new Sydney Metro,” said Mr Prentice.

John McAslan, Executive Chairman of John McAslan + Partners, comments:
“Like our King’s Cross scheme in the UK, this project will give Sydney a great new city space at the heart of one of the world’s most historic stations.”

Troy Uleman, Director, John McAslan + Partners Sydney said:
“Designed as a great, light filled unifying space at the heart of the station, helping to make wayfinding more intuitive; whilst also highlighting the heritage and civic value of the early 20th century terminus building, smaller Electric building and reemphasising the Eddy Avenue entrance. For the first time in a long time, we will be able to experience these buildings in their full grandeur.”

Sydney Central Station Roof NSW
The vaulted roof by Woods Bagot and John McAslan + Partners – photo © Cath Bowen Rusty Goat Media

The roof spans 32m (north to south) and 70m (east to west)
Made by Laing O’Rourke and under construction now for Sydney Metro
Central Station is Australia’s busiest station servicing 96 percent of Sydney’s train services. The upgrade, which includes Sydney Metro’s new Central Station, will accommodate an additional 40,000 metro passengers every hour – a 60 percent increase on current capacity – taking daily passenger numbers to 500,000.

About Woods Bagot

Woods Bagot Global Studio continually expands and challenges the expectations of multi-disciplinary architectural practice in a shifting, fast-moving digital era. Its portfolio is worldwide in scope, diverse in scale and discipline, and encompasses some of the highest-profile projects currently under way in North America, Europe, Asia, Australasia and the Middle East.

The firm’s work is defined by its clarity of narrative and by the extensive use of state-of-the-art analytics as a platform for design. Its 16 studios, located in major cities around the globe, consistently imbue the firm’s work with a rigorous vocabulary that references urban and regional context, ecological and social sustainability, and innovation.

Above all, Woods Bagot prioritizes human experience and delivers engaging, future-oriented projects for its clients.

About John McAslan + Partners
John McAslan + Partners is a leading, international architectural practice with offices in London, Edinburgh and Sydney who design buildings, spaces and places that put people first. With an aspiration to create architecture that transforms lives – from their Sydney stations that will create multi-modal sustainable transport hubs, through to the formation of a think tank to tackle the growing homeless crisis in our cities, JMP’s work aims to bring communities together and is guided by social purpose.

The practice is delivering Sydney Metro’s new Central Station with Woods Bagot and Laing O’Rourke and working on the new Sydney Metro Waterloo Station with the John Holland Group.

In 2012 the practice’s transformation of King’s Cross Station opened to the public to coincide with the London Olympics. It creates a remarkable dialogue between the original 19th century station and 21st-century architecture. King’s Cross is now an iconic architectural gateway to the capital. The scheme has restored Grade I listed historic fabric and added the highly innovative new concourse.

Sydney’s Central Station Roof, NSW images / information received 090920

John McAslan + Partners UK + Woods Bagot

Location: Central Place, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia

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