Last month The Harbour Trust decided to move forward with its plans for the renewal of the Torpedo Factory at Sub Base Platypus, North Sydney. This project will deliver a new foreshore park, a heritage interpretation, public access improvements, and a welcoming entry to Sub Base Platypus. The Harbour Trust has consulted extensively with the community of Sydney about the site’s renewal, as the former industrial and Defence complex has evolved into a public domain where historic spaces are to be revealed, interpreted and reimagined.
The Torpedo Factory Renewal Project will deliver a new foreshore park, heritage interpretation, public access improvements, and a welcoming entry to Sub Base Platypus, North Sydney…– HARBOUR TRUST
The Torpedo Factory Proposal
Late last year, the Harbour Trust proposed a new approach for the North Sydney Torpedo Factory. The approach was to ultimately create a new public parkland on the Northern foreshore, to facilitate this, the Harbour Trust prepared a draft amendment to the Platypus Management Plan. The detailed Planning Application and Platypus Management Plan were placed on public exhibition between the 12th of November and the 11th December 2020.
Now that the proposal has been approved by the Harbour Trust, the factories renewal process is currently underway. The Harbour Trust is going to hold drop in sessions and a design exhibition, this Winter to inform the community about the next steps for the North Sydney Torpedo Factory Renewal Project.
Community drop-in sessions
The community has been invited to attend a drop-in session this Winter to learn more about the final design and potential local impacts during the work and renewal phase of the project. The public will be given the opportunity to speak to a Harbour Trust representative at these sessions. The dates of these community drop in sessions are;
- Tuesday the 15th of June (3:30pm to 7:30pm) – Retort House, Sub Base Platypus (120 High Street, North Sydney)
- Saturday the 17th of July (10am to 2pm) – Retort House, Sub Base Platypus (120 High Street, North Sydney)
Torpedo Factory design exhibition
The community has also been invited to view an exhibition of the final design for the Torpedo Factory Renewal Project at the Retort House. The Retort House is located on the lower level of Sub Base Platypus at 120 High Street, North Sydney. The exhibition of the final design for the renewal project will be open to the public from the hours of 7am till 9pm daily between the dates of Wednesday the 9th of June and Friday the 23rd of July.
The history of Sub Base Platypus
Prior to the commencement of European colonisation in 1788, the Cammeraygal People occupied part of Port Jackson and their territory encompassed the site of Sub Base Platypus. The Cammeraygal People camped in caves on the harbour foreshore and lived on a diet of fish, possum and kangaroo, as well as native roots and berries.
During the 18th, 19th and 20th centuries, industrial activity disturbed the land such as the Neutral Bay Gas Works in 1876, a torpedo factory in 1942 and the Australian Submarine Squadron head quarters and communications base in the 1960’s. With so much history within it’s walls, Sub Base Platypus finally reopened to the public in May 2018, this was the first time in 150 years that the base was open to the public.
The site is set to be one of Sydney’s popular visitor destinations! Today visitors can enjoy a shaded BBQ area with seating, a playground for the kids and a scenic overwater walkway that links to Kesterton Park and the North Sydney Ferry Wharf. The current works and project renewal of the Torpedo Factory will create even more attention and only add more to do in the area for visitors.
The North Sydney Torpedo Factory Renewal Project is exciting for all Sydney siders as this new project will give people the opportunity learn about the history of the past and celebrate the present. For more on the renewal project visit: https://www.harbourtrust.gov.au/en/community/major-projects/torpedo-factory-renewal-project