Sydney Harbour Bridge, approaches and viaducts (road and rail) | NSW Environment, Energy and Science

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Sydney Harbour Bridge, approaches and viaducts (road and rail)

Item details

Name of item: Sydney Harbour Bridge, approaches and viaducts (road and rail)
Other name/s: Pylon Lookout; Milsons Point Railway Station; Bradfield Park; Bradfield Park North; Dawes Point Park; Bradfield Highway
Type of item: Complex / Group
Group/Collection: Transport - Land
Category: Road Bridge
Location: Lat: -33.8544294233 Long: 151.2093991420
Primary address: Bradfield Highway and North Shore Railway, Milsons Point/Dawes Point, NSW 2000
Parish: Willoughby
County: Cumberland
Local govt. area: Sydney
Local Aboriginal Land Council: Metropolitan
Property description
Lot/Volume CodeLot/Volume NumberSection NumberPlan/Folio CodePlan/Folio Number
LOTPT7 DP127637
   HC1864
LOTPT1 DP743856
LOTPT1 DP779561
LOT22 DP785020
LOT1 DP849664
LOT4 DP849664
LOT1 DP87564
LOT100 DP879674
All addresses
Street AddressSuburb/townLGAParishCountyType
Bradfield Highway and North Shore RailwayMilsons Point/Dawes PointSydneyWilloughbyCumberlandPrimary Address
Bradfield Highway and North Shore RailwayMilsons Point/Dawes PointNorth SydneyWilloughbyCumberlandAlternate Address
Bradfield Highway and North Shore RailwayMilsons Point/Dawes PointMultiple LGAs  Alternate Address
Trinity AvenueDawes PointSydneySt PhilipCumberlandAlternate Address
- (not given)(not given)Unincorporated Waterway CumberlandAlternate Address

Owner/s

Organisation NameOwner CategoryDate Ownership Updated
Roads and Maritime ServicesState Government25 Nov 98

Statement of significance:

The bridge is one of the most remarkable feats of bridge construction. At the time of construction and until recently it was the longest single span steel arch bridge in the world and is still in a general sense the largest. The bridge, its pylons and its approaches are all important elements in townscape of areas both near and distant from it. The curved northern approach gives a grand sweeping entrance to the bridge with continually changing views of the bridge and harbour. The bridge has been an important factor in the pattern of growth of metropolitan Sydney, particularly in residential development in post World War II years. In the 1960s and 1970s the Central Business District had extended to the northern side of the bridge at North Sydney which has been due in part to the easy access provided by the bridge and also to the increasing traffic problems associated with the bridge (Walker and Kerr 1974).
Date significance updated: 15 Jul 03
Note: The State Heritage Inventory provides information about heritage items listed by local and State government agencies. The State Heritage Inventory is continually being updated by local and State agencies as new information becomes available. Read the OEH copyright and disclaimer.

Description

Designer/Maker: JJC. Bradfield and R. Freeman
Builder/Maker: Dorman, Long and Co.
Construction years: 1924-1932
Physical description: The bridge is constructed of silicon steel trusses and joists painted dark grey. The pylons are faced with granite. The portion of the approaches nearest the arch are constructed of open work steel joists which are supported by granite-faced pillars. The remainder of the approaches are steel and masonry construction with render finish. The span of the arch, measured between the centres of the end pins, is 1670 feet. The arch is divided into 28 panels of open steel work, each panel being 58 ft. 11 in. The rise of the arch at its crown is 250 feet and the depth of the truss at the centre of the arch is 60 feet and at the end it is 188 feet.

Under the heaviest allowable load, the deflection at the centre of the bridge is 4 and half inches, and the maximum thrust at the hinges, (ie at the ends of the arch) is 435,000,000 lb. per hinge. The top of the arch is 445 ft. above water level and the roadway suspended below the arch is 170 ft. above the water level. The 'roadway' is 150 ft wide and total length including the approaches is 3816 ft.

The steel sections were produced in the Britannia Works of Dorman Long & Co, Middlesborough, England and fabricated in the company's workshops especially erected on the shores of Lavender Bay (Mackaness, C (ed): Bridging Sydney, Historic Houses Trust, 2006). The granite facing the towers and pylons is from Moruya. (Walker and Kerr 1974). The five million rivets were manufactured by Macphersons of Melbourne.
Physical condition and/or
Archaeological potential:
Physical condition is excellent.
ARCHAEOLOGICAL POTENTIAL:
In 2001, the archaeological potential was assessed as low (Di Fazio), however during excavations for approved landscaping upgrade works in April 2003 archaeological relics were discovered:
"The sandstone walls at Bradfield Park North are assessed as having 'moderate' heritage significance at a local level in the context of the overall established significance of Bradfield Park. The walls contribute to the overall significance of the Bradfield Park precinct for the following reasons:
-The sandstone walls date to the late 1800s, an early period of occupation in Milsons Point. The walls are an intact part of the original boundaries surrounding the residence located at 115-117 Alfred Street. The walls are therefore surviving elements of North Sydney's history; and
-The walls are part of the original layout associated with the early structures of Alfred Street, Milsons Point and are indicative of an initial phase of use of Bradfield Park.

"The surviving walls are significant through their ability to demonstrate that the construction of the bridge had both a positive and negative impact on the North Shore community. The walls demonstrate that the Bridge resulted in the destruction of established houses and other buildings at Milsons Point" [Statement of Heritage Impact - Sandstone Walls: Bradfield Park North, Milsons Point (2003: 8-9), McFadyen and Stuart, HLA Envirosciences].

A cesspit or well unexpected found in July 2003 is likely to been located to the rear of a domestic property at the site, according to an analysis of historical plans (Russell and McFadyen, HLA Envirosciences 2003: 4).
Date condition updated:30 Jul 03
Modifications and dates: 1924 - construction commenced.
2003 - Excavations for landscape upgrade of Bradfield Park North have led to the discovery of archaeological remains of former houses and other structures at Milsons Point.
Further information: The approaches include Bradfield Park (North Sydney) and Dawes Point Park (Sydney).
Current use: Bridge and multiple uses
Former use: Aboriginal land, timber-getting, farmland/grazing, bridge and multiple uses

History

Historical notes: Dawes Point:
The Aboriginal name for Dawes Point is Tar-ra (Sydney City Council, 2019).

ABORIGINAL OCCUPATION
Prior to European settlement the Millers Point area was part of the wider Cadigal territory, in which the clan fished, hunted and gathered shellfish from the nearby mudflats. Shellfish residue was deposited in middens, in the area known to the early Europeans as Cockle Bay; the middens were later utilised by the Europeans in lime kilns for building purposes. The Millers Point area was known to the Cadigal as Coodye, and Dawes Point as Tar-ra/Tarra.

In the years following European colonisation of the eastern coast, the Cadigal population, as among the wider indigenous community, was devastated by the introduction of diseases such as smallpox. Remnants of the original Port Jackson clans eventually banded together for survival purposes, but the population continued to decline, exacerbated by alienation from their land and food sources, and by acts of aggression and retaliation, caused partly through cultural misunderstanding and partly through eighteenth-century European mindsets and perceptions about the colonisation process.

The Aboriginal name for Dawes Point is Tar-ra (Sydney City Council, 2019).

INITIAL EUROPEAN SETTLEMENT
The first settlers at Sydney Cove in 1788 were hampered from thorough exploration of the Millers Point area by reasons of topography: to reach this western ridged area involved either trekking around the foreshore via Dawes Point, or by scaling the steep and rocky inclines of the Rocks. Priority was given to establishing the colony's first structures, and the settlers' interests were initially geared more towards temporary housing and a ready supply of fresh water (via the Tank Stream) than in conquering challenging topography. In July 1788 the high ground to the west of Sydney Cove saw the erection of a flagstaff, giving rise to its early name of Flagstaff Hill, later Observatory Hill.

The earliest buildings in the Millers Point area were intended to serve specific purposes, either for strategic military or agricultural needs. The first government windmill was built on the site in February 1797, supplying the origin of the third name of Windmill Hill. Subsequent windmills were established in 1812 by Nathaniel Lucas at Dawes Point, and a further three windmills operated by Jack 'the Miller' Leighton were situated in Millers Point, near the sites of present-day Bettington and Merriman Streets. Throughout this early period Jack the Miller became increasingly associated with the area, ultimately contributing to its name.

For military purposes, Governor King authorised the construction of Fort Phillip in 1804, a short-lived structure with hexagonal foundations that were eventually re-used in 1858 for the footprint of the extant Observatory. Fort Phillip had been designed for both internal and external defence mechanisms as it boasted both landward and seaward views. In 1815, a military hospital designed by Lieutenant John Watts was constructed in close proximity to Flagstaff Hill and Fort Phillip. Catering for both military and scientific demands was the Point Maskelyne observatory, built by William Dawes at the end of the point: immediately adjacent to his beloved observatory was the Dawes Battery, initially set up in 1788 and upgraded in 1791 whilst under Dawes' administration.

ECONOMIC AND MARITIME DEVELOPMENT OF MILLERS POINT
These initial structures were rapidly supplemented by dwellings and early industries. One profitable industry that exploited local resources was the production of stone for the construction of housing and services in early Sydney: sections of Millers Point were known as 'The Quarries', near Kent and the western end of Windmill Streets. Quarrying was an established industry by the mid 1820s, and this process of systematically altering the landscape continued as a pattern throughout the century, ultimately shaping the emerging village and directing the development of the local streetscape and housing pattern. A second local industry was lime production, used in building construction and carried out just below Fort Phillip using shells acquired from local aboriginal middens. As this supply diminished, shellfish was brought from the wider Sydney area to be burnt at Millers Point.

The location of Millers Point, with its relationship to the waterfront, was ideally suited for shipping purposes, and merchants tapped in to its potential by erecting private jetties, wharves and storage for goods. The village of Millers Point became a definitive one in the early 1830s, as maritime and other related enterprises began to radiate outwards from Sydney Cove, bringing with it residential and commercial facilities. Access to Millers Point was gained through a set of rough-cut steps leading through from the Rocks. Those who chose to live in the area comprised both the successful wharf-owners and employees, labourers and artisans. Ownership of Millers Point land was by haphazard means; while some was documented as granted land, other parcels appeared to have been simply 'occupied' and by the mid 1830s administration, ownership and transfer of land was problematic and from the late 1830s a Commissioner of Claims was responsible for issuing land grants for most of Millers Point.

The village quickly became an integral part in coastal and international trade and shipping, shipbuilding and similar related activities. The incorporation of such commercial and mercantilist elements was both indicative of, and contributory to the public perception and nature of Millers Point, with a roll-on effect throughout the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Growing colonial interest in whaling and maritime enterprises fostered local prosperity during the 1830s and 1840s. From this period Millers Point became irrevocably associated with maritime industries and activities, with merchants, sailors and craftsmen putting a distinctive stamp on the area. The success of such mercantilist ventures and associated industries became evident in both commercial and residential architecture, constructed for merchants such as Robert Towns and Robert Campbell. Sections of Millers Point became regarded as affluent enclaves, with Argyle and Lower Fort Streets known as 'Quality Row.'

The close association with shipping and related patterns of activity and industry was derived from the labourers' need to be at hand upon arrival of vessels. Valuable goods such as wool had to be loaded and unloaded at a rapid rate of turnover, with labourers required to be on call and, as such, in the nearby vicinity to respond to erratic shipping arrivals and departures. An important outcome of this trade activity was the generation of a community that was overwhelmingly mobile, maintaining relatively loose family networks and containing a high transient population. These key characteristics of Millers Point distinguished it from other areas, and its unusual composition was reflected by the high level of rental housing, which in most other suburbs was an indicator of poverty and unskilled workforces. In this instance, however, the rental rates were generated by the need for flexibility and seasonal job availability on the part of workers.

Despite high mobility on the part of the population, Millers Point was able to act as a self-contained village from the 1840s; this characteristic was enhanced by its continuing topographical isolation from the town of Sydney. It was an early multicultural community with sailors and merchants from all parts of the world. Local amenities catered for shopping, work and socialising as well as the provision of churches, schools and other essential services. The Catholic St Brigid's Church and school in Kent Street was completed in 1835, with the foundation stone of the Anglican Holy Trinity, or Garrison Church, laid in 1840 at the corner of Argyle and Lower Fort Streets. The latter became particularly associated with the Dawes Battery military garrison but also served as a base for school and moral education and a forum for community gatherings in accordance with the accepted role of churches in the colony. Other centres equally if not more popular for social gatherings were the host of hotels and licensed premises that catered for a range of clientele. Some, such as the Lord Nelson and the Hero of Waterloo, became local institutions and remained active in the community to the present day. A myriad of hotels, often sporting similar or frequently-changing names, provided local colour and an insight into current affairs and fads but inevitably adding to the confusion. Many of these early hotel buildings are extant, such as the Whalers Arms (former Young Princess), on Lower Fort and Windmill Streets, and such structures stand as testimony to the fact that by the mid-century the Millers Point hotels were an integral part of both the social and economic roles of the area.

The sense of segregation and self-sufficiency began to be eroded through proposals to incorporate Millers Point with the rest of Sydney. Plans to facilitate greater access to the Millers Point area dated from 1832, with the first suggestion of cutting through the 'precipice of considerable height' on Argyle Street. To that point, rough steps had originally been cut into the rock, to allow passage between the Rocks and Millers Point. The Argyle Cut project commenced in 1843 using convict labour initially, and was completed through the resources of the newly formed City Council from about 1845. The sandstone itself was used in the construction of local buildings, as was the case with the Hero of Waterloo Hotel. In spite of this increased accessibility, the unique character of Millers Point was undiminished. Certainly by the mid-point of the nineteenth century a gradual overlaying of cultural features had evolved into a flourishing and distinct community, with various church denominations, a wide range of commercial and social services, and in 1850, the Fort Street Model School was opened, having been the original military hospital constructed in 1815 and renovated to architect Mortimer Lewis' design in 1849. This clearly earmarked Millers Point as a prosperous area, and presaged the modern practice of adapting old buildings in the area to accommodate new uses.

Local prosperity was briefly thrown into a trough following the allure of the Californian gold fields, with employers hard-pressed to find enough experienced workers at the right price. This trend, however, was abruptly reversed within a short space of time. Indeed, the pace of the Millers Point community accelerated rapidly in the 1850s to accommodate the frenzy generated by the discovery of gold at Bathurst and the consequent flood of immigrants into New South Wales. This coincided with an increase in large-scale exports, particularly wool, to diverse international markets. By the 1860s the earlier mix of worker and merchant/gentry housing began to be overtaken by commercial needs and by the creation of new residential streetscapes such as Argyle Place and Kent Street, with a distinct change in the size of residential buildings and an increasing use of materials such as slate. The mercantilist face of Millers Point also changed, with the construction and extension of larger jetties and warehouses for imported goods as well as staples such as wool, coal and flour. Gradually this period of upgrading saw the small scale industries and structures superseded by the encroaching larger-scale warehouses, responding to the demand created by larger vessels. A corresponding shift in the population showed that the artisans and merchant gentry were moving elsewhere, and that Millers Point was overwhelmingly oriented towards booming export industries, with a workforce and resident population of unskilled and semi-skilled labourers catering for specific tasks.

A Harbour Bridge:
In 1815, government architect Francis Greenway, in a report to Governor Macquarie, proposed the building of a bridge from Dawes Point at the city's edge to the northern shore. However it was not until 1922 that legislation was passed and acted upon, authorising the construction of a bridge. Tenders were invited in 1923 in accordance with general plans and specifications prepared by Dr J.J.C. Bradfield, Chief Engineer, Sydney Harbour Bridge and Railway Construction. The plans and specification provided the alternatives of a cantilever bridge or an arch bridge.

Twenty proposals were received from six different companies for various types of design, including suspension bridges not covered by Dr Bradfield's specification. The tender of Dorman Long and Co. Ltd., of Middlesborough England for an arch bridge was accepted, the design being substantially in accordance with one of Dr Bradfield's proposals. The detailed design was carried out by the Contractor's Consulting Engineer, Sir Ralph Freeman, and the fabrication and construction were under the direct charge of Mr Lawrence Ennis, a director of the firm. The design and the construction of the bridge were supervised at all stages by Dr. Bradfield and his staff.

First work on the bridge commenced in 1924, with construction of the bridge approaches and the approach spans. While the approach spans were being built, the foundations on either side of the harbour were prepared to take four steel bearings consisting of large hinge pins and massive steel bases for support of the arches.

At each end of the arch span of the bridge, and just behind the bearings, large abutment towers supporting the pylons were constructed. The abutment towers with the pylons are not a necessary structural feature of the bridge. They do not support the arch and were built principally to enhance the appearance of the structure.

As the erection of the steelwork was proceeding, the approaches were being constructed, including Milsons Point and North Sydney railway stations, and roadway approaches on both sides of the harbour.

The bridge was opened to roadway, railway and pedestrian traffic by the then Premier of New South Wales, Mr J.T. Lang, on the 19th March 1932.

The time taken to complete the whole work, including bridge and approaches was eight years. The contract for the bridge construction provided for six months' maintenance by the contractors from the date of opening, after which maintenance became the responsibility of the State. (GHD Transportation Consultant 1982:4).

Three days before the bridge opened, Premier Jack Lang announced a toll of sixpence for vehicles and threepence for adults. This was viewed with suspicion that it had been timed to 'get lost' in the excitement of the opening, said Anni Turnbull, a curator at the State Library of NSW who has completed a 5-part podcast and history of the bridge. Despite reported opposition to a toll by the city's engineer, John Bradfield, the Premier decided everyone would pay, including the people of the North Shore. They had been paying a special land tax since 1923 to support construction of a 'North Shore Bridge' that would link north and south, ultimately replacing most of the ferries crossing from Milsons Point to Circular Quay. Children, sheep and pigs would be charged a penny a head. By the time the 'grand old coathanger' was paid off in 1988, it had cost more than $70 milllion. This was about 350% more than the original forecast (cost), the Greinder government revealed in 1988 (Power, 2018, 16).

BRADFIELD PARK NORTH (SANDSTONE WALLS and CESSPIT/WELL)
Post-Contact History
1800: area was part of a land grant given to Robert Ryan;

1850s: following subsequent acquisitions, subdivision and sale, the area became known as the Milsons Point Wharf and Lane Cove Road (Alfred Street) development, with subsequent urban development (primarily working class terrace housing);

1924: construction of the Sydney Harbour Bridge began, resulting in the demolition of all extant dwellings, structures and streets in the Milsons Point Wharf and Lane Cove Road (Alfred Street) development (a total of 438 houses were demolished for the construction of the northern approaches of the Harbour Bridge). Subsequent reclamation works provided more useable foreshore/public space and the area became known as Bradfield Park North. Bradfield Park North was also used as a depot for large machinery and vehicles used during the construction phase of the bridge;

1930s: After the Bridge was completed the area required replanting and rehabilitation;

1932: the site was handed over to North Sydney Council for long term management and was subsequently redesigned as described in the previous S60 assessment report in Annexure A;

c1940s: The Park was briefly used by the Royal Australian Air Force as a mobilisation, movement and demobilisation depot. Early 19th and 20th century surveyed plans as well as a 1926 photograph provide the primary evidence for the existence of these structures. The study area is located in an allotment which was formerly occupied by a Victorian terrace which was a two storey dual residence at 115-117 Alfred Street. It was a typical 1890s residence constructed for occupation by the working to middle class. The photographs also show that large sandstone blocks were used under houses along Alfred Street to compensate for the sloping topography.

Perhaps in the 1950s when trams ceased operating and the dedicated tramway (over the bridge) was converted into a roadway, the bridge's lighting was deemed inadequate and the original bronze lanterns were removed. These were reinstated following preparation of a conservation management plan for the bridge by the NSW Department of Public Works in 1997, under the direction of Peter Mann, Strategic Infrastructure Manager, for Roads & Maritime Services. A single blueprint of the original lantern design was used to commission modern replicas, the bronze cast in a local foundry, the original milky glass remade in Croatia (Schofield, 2019, 12).

In 2019 Sydney's first harbourside walk dedicated to indigenous history is set to be given the green light, with the City of Sydney's 9 km foreshore walk to link locations of hidden historical significance along the foreshore, stretching from the Australian National Maritime Museum in Darling Harbour to Woolloomooloo. A report by Indigenous curator Emily McDaniel to be considered by the City next week identifies 5 'monumental' stories of Aboriginal history that should be brought to life for visitors. At Dawes Point (Ta-Ra), site of the hut of Lieutenant William Dawes, McDaniel has proposed an audio and text installation and artwork to honour the cultural exchange between Dawes and the young Eora woman Patyegarang. Dawes' journals, which had translations of Indigenous words, became the source material for the revitalisation of the local Sydney (Eora) language. At (the) Hungry Mile, near Barangaroo, connections between Aboriginal wharf workers, unions and Indigenous activism are to be honoured with public artwork funded in partnership with Lendlease. Sitelines would draw attention to the connections between Barangaroo and Goat Island (Me-Mel), Mrs Macquarie's Point (Yurong) and Garden Island (Bayinguwa) (Morris, 2019).

Historic themes

Australian theme (abbrev)New South Wales themeLocal theme
1. Environment-Tracing the evolution of a continent's special environments Environment - naturally evolved-Activities associated with the physical surroundings that support human life and influence or shape human cultures. Other open space-
1. Environment-Tracing the evolution of a continent's special environments Environment - naturally evolved-Activities associated with the physical surroundings that support human life and influence or shape human cultures. Topography: How did the environment, topography and the River influence early settlement? Is there a strong relationship-Peopling the Continent Contact
1. Environment-Tracing the evolution of a continent's special environments Environment - naturally evolved-Activities associated with the physical surroundings that support human life and influence or shape human cultures. Changing the environment-
1. Environment-Tracing the evolution of a continent's special environments Environment - naturally evolved-Activities associated with the physical surroundings that support human life and influence or shape human cultures. Modification of terrain-
3. Economy-Developing local, regional and national economies Environment - cultural landscape-Activities associated with the interactions between humans, human societies and the shaping of their physical surroundings Sydney and Australian Landmark-
3. Economy-Developing local, regional and national economies Environment - cultural landscape-Activities associated with the interactions between humans, human societies and the shaping of their physical surroundings Developing local, regional and national economies-National Theme 3
3. Economy-Developing local, regional and national economies Events-Activities and processes that mark the consequences of natural and cultural occurences Developing national landmarks-
3. Economy-Developing local, regional and national economies Events-Activities and processes that mark the consequences of natural and cultural occurences Holding opening and dedication ceremonies-
3. Economy-Developing local, regional and national economies Technology-Activities and processes associated with the knowledge or use of mechanical arts and applied sciences Technologies of bridge building-
3. Economy-Developing local, regional and national economies Transport-Activities associated with the moving of people and goods from one place to another, and systems for the provision of such movements Building the railway network-
3. Economy-Developing local, regional and national economies Transport-Activities associated with the moving of people and goods from one place to another, and systems for the provision of such movements Bridging rivers-
3. Economy-Developing local, regional and national economies Transport-Activities associated with the moving of people and goods from one place to another, and systems for the provision of such movements Engineering the public road system-
3. Economy-Developing local, regional and national economies Transport-Activities associated with the moving of people and goods from one place to another, and systems for the provision of such movements Engineering the public railway system-
3. Economy-Developing local, regional and national economies Transport-Activities associated with the moving of people and goods from one place to another, and systems for the provision of such movements Building and maintaining public roads-
4. Settlement-Building settlements, towns and cities Towns, suburbs and villages-Activities associated with creating, planning and managing urban functions, landscapes and lifestyles in towns, suburbs and villages Creating landmark structures and places in urban settings-
5. Working-Working Labour-Activities associated with work practises and organised and unorganised labour Working on public infrastructure projects-
7. Governing-Governing Government and Administration-Activities associated with the governance of local areas, regions, the State and the nation, and the administration of public programs - includes both principled and corrupt activities. Developing roles for government - building and operating public infrastructure-
9. Phases of Life-Marking the phases of life Persons-Activities of, and associations with, identifiable individuals, families and communal groups Associations with Peter Watts, heritage beaurocrat, museum manager, advocate-
9. Phases of Life-Marking the phases of life Persons-Activities of, and associations with, identifiable individuals, families and communal groups Associations with Dr J.J.C. Bradfield, Chief Engineer, City Railways-
9. Phases of Life-Marking the phases of life Persons-Activities of, and associations with, identifiable individuals, families and communal groups Associations with Dorman Long, English Engineering Company-
9. Phases of Life-Marking the phases of life Persons-Activities of, and associations with, identifiable individuals, families and communal groups Associations with the Hon. J.T. (Jack) Lang MLA, NSW Treasurer, Premier-

Assessment of significance

SHR Criteria a)
[Historical significance]
The bridge is one of the most remarkable feats of bridge construction. At the time of construction and until recently it was the longest single span steel arch bridge in the world and is still in a general sense the largest. (Walker and Kerr 1974)

BRADFIELD PARK NORTH (SANDSTONE WALLS):
"The archaeological remains are demonstrative of an earlier phase of urban development within Milsons Point and the wider North Sydney precinct. The walls are physical evidence that a number of 19th century residences existed on the site which were resumed and demolished as part of the Sydney Harbour Bridge construction" [Statement of Heritage Impact - Sandstone Walls: Bradfield Park North, Milsons Point (2003: 8), McFadyen and Stuart, HLA Envirosciences].
SHR Criteria c)
[Aesthetic significance]
The bridge, its pylons and its approaches are all important elements in townscape of areas both near and distant from it. The curved northern approach gives a grand sweeping entrance to the bridge with continually changing views of the bridge and harbour. (Walker and Kerr 1974)
SHR Criteria d)
[Social significance]
The bridge has been an important factor in the pattern of growth of metropolitan Sydney, particularly in residential development in post World War II years. In the 1960s and 1970s the Central Business District had extended to the northern side of the bridge at North Sydney which has been due in part to the easy access provided by the bridge and also to the increasing traffic problems associated with the bridge. (Walker and Kerr 1974)
SHR Criteria e)
[Research potential]
BRADFIELD PARK NORTH (SANDSTONE WALLS):
"The archaeological remains have some potential to yield information about the previous residential and commercial occupation of Milsons Point prior to the construction of the Sydney Harbour Bridge transport link" [Statement of Heritage Impact - Sandstone Walls: Bradfield Park North, Milsons Point (2003: 8), McFadyen and Stuart, HLA Envirosciences].
Integrity/Intactness: Good except for removal of railway works on eastern side.
Assessment criteria: Items are assessed against the PDF State Heritage Register (SHR) Criteria to determine the level of significance. Refer to the Listings below for the level of statutory protection.

Procedures /Exemptions

Section of actDescriptionTitleCommentsAction date
21(1)(b)Conservation Plan submitted for endorsementfinal CMP submitted by RMS including Carole-Lynne‚Äôs detailed comments, along with key stakeholders including Sydney Trains, DPC and City of Sydney.  
21(1)(b)Conservation Plan submitted for endorsementSydney Harbour Bridge CMP  
21(1)(b)Conservation Plan submitted for commentSydney Harboure Bridge CMP 2007 - changes being made to CMP resulting from gazettal.  
21(1)(b)Conservation Plan submitted for endorsementConservation Management Plan Mar 19 1998
57(2)Exemption to allow workHeritage Act Also Gazettal and notification of SHR listing


Order Under Section 57(2) to exempt the following activities from Section 57(1):
The following activities when carried out in accordance with the recommendations of a conservation management plan approved by the Heritage Council of NSW:
(a) repair of structural components of the bridge to include pavement resurfacing, track laying, electric catenary replacement (excluding portals and supports) and repair of safe working, traffic management and navigational infrastructure on the bridge and approaches;
(b) minor modification to road, rail, navigational and other service operating infrastucture on the bridge and approaches;
(c) operation of rail service, traffic management and toll collection infrastructure on the bridge and approaches;
(d) minor internal changes to office spaces, retail and other tenancy spaces on the bridge and approaches and to recreational facilities;
(e) installation of signage not being for commercial or advertising purposes;
(f) temporary and reversible works for the operation of special events;
(g) maintenance of roadways, footpaths, parklands and vegetation;
(h) minor subdivision in terms of State Environmental Planning Policy No. 4;
(i) change of use from an approved use to a similar permissable use.
Jun 25 1999
21(1)(b)Conservation Plan submitted for endorsementSydney Harbour Bridge CMP, by GML for RTA, dated February 2007 Conservation Managemnent Plan endorsed by Heritage Council 16 March 2007 for a period of five years, expires 16 March 2012 Mar 16 2007
57(2)Exemption to allow workHeritage Act HERITAGE ACT, 1977

ORDER UNDER SECTION 57(2)

Sydney Harbour Bridge

SHR No. 781

I, the Minister for Planning, on the recommendation of the Heritage Council of New South Wales, in pursuance of section 57(2) of the Heritage Act, 1977, do, by this my Order, revoke the exemptions granted on the 19th June 1999 from section 57(1) of the said Act in respect of the engaging in or carrying out of any activities by the owner, mortgagee or lessee of the land described in Schedule B on the item described in Schedule A; and grant an exemption from section 57(1) of the said Act in respect of the engaging in or carrying out of any activities described in Schedule C by the owner, mortgagee or lessee of the land described in Schedule B on the item described in Schedule A.

FRANK SARTOR, M.P.,
Minister for Planning

Sydney, 3 Day of July 2007

SCHEDULE A

The item known as the Sydney Harbour Bridge and Approaches, situated on the land described in Schedule B.

SCHEDULE B

All those pieces or parcels of land in the Parishes of St Philip and Willoughby, County of Cumberland, Cities of Sydney and North Sydney, shown on the plan catalogued HC 1864 in the office of the Heritage Council of New South Wales.

SCHEDULE C
The following activities when carried out in accordance with a conservation management plan endorsed by the Heritage Council of New South Wales:

1.maintenance and minor repairs necessary to preserve and maintain the functioning of the structure as a transport and services corridor, for example pavement resurfacing, track laying, electric catenary replacement, traffic management, toll collection and navigational infrastructure, and pipework and cabling;
2.minor works necessary to preserve and maintain the functioning of the Bridge, for example drainage modifications, modifications to road, rail, navigational, traffic management and toll collection and other infrastructure;
3.minor works necessary to preserve and maintain the functioning of utility supply and communications, for example modifications and improvements to power supply systems, communications cabling and water supply systems including fire hydrants;
4.minor works necessary to preserve and enhance the security of the Bridge such as security fencing, video surveillance and detection systems;
5.minor works necessary to upgrade and enhance the structural integrity of the Bridge that do not alter its overall form or shape or significantly change the appearance of bridge elements;
6.minor works internal to the Bridge structure or structural members that do not physically change the external appearance of the Bridge or bridge members;
7.temporary works including containment areas, scaffolding and enclosures necessary for the carrying out of maintenance, enhancement or upgrading works;
8.minor internal changes to office spaces, retail and other tenancy spaces and recreational facilities;
9.installation of safety or information signs, not being for commercial or advertising purposes;
10.temporary and reversible works for the operation of special events;
11.maintenance of roadways, footpaths, parklands and vegetation;
12.minor subdivision in terms of State Environmental Planning Policy No. 4;
13.change of use from approved use to a similar permissible use;
14.works that in the opinion of the Executive Director of the Heritage Office, Department of Planning, are required for the security of the Bridge and bridge users, and that need to remain confidential.

In exercising this provision, the Executive Director of the Heritage Office, Department of Planning, shall have regard to the general conditions, guidelines and definitions regarding standard exemptions as issued and amended from time to time, and in Standard Exemptions for Works Requiring Heritage Council Approval, as amended from time to time and published by the Heritage Office, in determining which works require approval under s57(2) of the Heritage Act 1977
Jul 13 2007
57(2)Exemption to allow workStandard Exemptions SCHEDULE OF STANDARD EXEMPTIONS
HERITAGE ACT 1977
Notice of Order Under Section 57 (2) of the Heritage Act 1977

I, the Minister for Planning, pursuant to subsection 57(2) of the Heritage Act 1977, on the recommendation of the Heritage Council of New South Wales, do by this Order:

1. revoke the Schedule of Exemptions to subsection 57(1) of the Heritage Act made under subsection 57(2) and published in the Government Gazette on 22 February 2008; and

2. grant standard exemptions from subsection 57(1) of the Heritage Act 1977, described in the Schedule attached.

FRANK SARTOR
Minister for Planning
Sydney, 11 July 2008

To view the schedule click on the Standard Exemptions for Works Requiring Heritage Council Approval link below.
Sep 5 2008
21(1)(b)Conservation Plan submitted for endorsementSydney Harbour Bridge Conservation Management Plan prepared by Godden Mackay Logan and RTA Aug 4 2010
21(1)(b)Conservation Plan submitted for endorsementConservation Management Plan 2013 submitted by Roads and Maritime Services for endorsement. Mar 26 2013
21(1)(b)Conservation Plan submitted for commentA revised CMP has been submitted for comment. Mar 26 2013

PDF Standard exemptions for works requiring Heritage Council approval

Listings

Heritage ListingListing TitleListing NumberGazette DateGazette NumberGazette Page
Heritage Act - State Heritage Register 0078125 Jun 99 724438
Local Environmental PlanCSH Local Environmental Plan 4 07 Apr 00   
Local Environmental PlanNorth Sydney, 2001    
National Trust of Australia register   11 Feb 74   
National Heritage ListSydney Harbour Bridge 19 Mar 07 S49 
Register of the National Estate  21 Mar 78   

References, internet links & images

TypeAuthorYearTitleInternet Links
TourismAttraction Homepage2007Sydney Harbour Bridge, approaches and viaducts (road and rail) View detail
TourismBridgeClimb2007BridgeClimb View detail
WrittenDi Fazio, B2001Bradfield Park North, Milsons Point Archaeological Assessment
WrittenGeraldine O'Brien2003Men of steel who built the bridge with hard yakka (SMH 25/8/03)
WrittenGHD Transportation Consultants Pty Ltd1982Environmental Impact Statement for ninth lane and fottway on Sydney Harbour Bridge Sydney NSW
WrittenMcFadyen, K and Stuart, I., HLA Envirosciences2003Statement of Heritage Impact - Sandstone Walls: Bradfield Park North, Milsons Point
WrittenMeaghan Russell and Kylie McFadyen, HLA Envirosciences2003Section 65A Research Design: Cesspit or Well, Bradfield Park North, Milsons Point
WrittenMorris, Linda2019Harbourside hike in footsteps of Indigenous heritage
PhotographNathanael Hughes, Photographer2015Archival Photographic Recording of Bay 9, Middlemiss Street, Lavender Bay, NSW
WrittenPeter Douglas2005Archaeological Management of Proposed Development of Bradfield Park Plaza, Bradfield Park South at Milsons Point NSW
WrittenPeter Ryan and Daniel Percival2005Bradfield Park Lightning Pit: Photographic recording of Heritage Items (August 2005)
WrittenPower, Julie2018'Lang's token effort as bridge took its toll'
WrittenRTA oral history program2007SydneyHarbourbridge celebrating 75 years / [electronic resource]
WrittenSchofield, Leo2019'Mann the Bridge' (interview with Peter Mann, RMS, Strategic Infrastructure Manager)
WrittenSydney City Council2019Cartographica - Sydney on the Map
TourismTourism NSW2007Sydney Harbour Bridge Pylon Lookout View detail
WrittenWalker and Kerr1974National Trust Classification Card - Sydney Harbour Bridge

Note: internet links may be to web pages, documents or images.

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Data source

The information for this entry comes from the following source:
Name: Heritage Office
Database number: 5045703
File number: EF10/01415; S95/1518; S95/439


Every effort has been made to ensure that information contained in the State Heritage Inventory is correct. If you find any errors or omissions please send your comments to the Database Manager.

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