Barangaroo Reserve

Barangaroo Reserve establishes what Barangaroo means for Sydney: from a transformed industrial area to a spectacular harbourside precinct. 

Barangaroo Reserve recreates a headland that existed before European arrival in Sydney – a place used by First Nations people for thousands of years. This re-imagining required a process of restoration, creation and construction. 

Timeline

Timeline

2015

Barangaroo Reserve opens.

2010 – 2015

some 75,000 plants and 10,000 blocks of sandstone begin the journey from artist’s impression to reality.

2007 – 2008

Vision and planning for a headland park in Barangaroo commence.

Moving history and earth

Barangaroo Reserve was designed by Peter Walker, FASLA, of PWP Landscape Architecture in association with the Australian design practice Johnson Pilton Walker (JPW).  

Large shell middens and rock engravings close to the site indicate occupation dating back around 6,000 years. The team aimed to recreate what was once a popular and culturally significant hunting and fishing area for the Gadigal People of the Eora Nation. 

Using the earliest historical maps and landscape paintings of the area, the team generated computer models to mirror the previous terrain.  

Today, Barangaroo Reserve is the crowning achievement of the Barangaroo project and a major civic contribution embraced by Sydneysiders and visitors. 

Indigenous educators keep the history and majesty of Barangaroo Reserve alive through Aboriginal Cultural Tours where participants learn of the area’s connections to Country while hearing and seeing the many layers of the Reserve’s history.  

Environmental ecosystems

The 75,000 native trees and shrubs planted at Barangaroo cover 45 species. This whole-of-site, whole-of-life sustainable approach uses a compost of re-used crushed sandstone and recycled sand from building excavations, green garden bins and wood mulch.  

This is the most scientifically significant planting program of its kind in central Sydney for decades – and it is thriving. Port Jackson figs have doubled in size since they were planted and shrubs such as wattle and callistemon are filling out to cover construction elements.  

Repurposing sandstone

Of the 10,000 sandstone blocks used to create the extraordinary Barangaroo Reserve, 93% come from Barangaroo itself. Extraction works purposefully allowed for blocks – tagged and organised to align with the design – that give a sense of scale and height, allowing people to experience the sensation of travelling ever nearer to the water’s edge from the top of the reserve to the waterfront. 

Sandstone also shaped the construction of The Cutaway, a sensational 75-cubic metre concrete space with a 120m column-free area. This is an engineering masterpiece - one of the largest internal spaces in Australia, sheltered under 12,000 cubic metres of rock, grass and mature trees. This versatile and atmospheric canvas allows The Cutaway to metamorphosise to suit events and celebrations.  

Find out more of what makes Barangaroo Reserve so unique by visiting the area. Check out our Visit section for more information.

Barangaroo South

Barangaroo is place-making in progress, an evolution of exceptional infrastructure, design and architecture, public spaces, and experiences.

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Picnics

Barangaroo Reserve is the perfect spot for a harbourside picnic.