A major design flaw has been revealed for the new museum for western Sydney – it has no entry for visitors.
Powerhouse Museum chief executive Lisa Havilah was quizzed about the $1.5 billion building at Senate Estimates yesterday, Nine News reports.
The museum has to be elevated because it will sit on a flood plain in Parramatta and one option is to put it on stilts.
But such a plan hasn’t allowed for a way to get into the museum, which is being relocated from its site in Ultimo.
Ms Havilah was asked if there would be stairs or an escalator for people to get up to the building.
“Well that’s a process that’s being worked through… as part of the stage three design,” she said.
She was then pressed on whether the issue was yet to be resolved and said it had not.
“Well it’s part of the design process,” she said.
Nine News reports the proposed design is meant to protect the artefacts if a flood happens again.
Shadow Arts Minister Walt Secord said the project would be funny if it wasn’t costing so much.
He previously criticised the building as being a “monstrosity on stilts”.
“It’s a monstrosity on two levels — costly and ugly,” Mr Secord said.
“The Berejiklian Government was warned about the flood plain at Parramatta and it responded by putting together a Queensland-style flood and cyclone house deep in the heart of Parramatta.
“This project has lurched from crisis to crisis and the winning design is utterly disappointing.”
Its design from French-Japanese firm Moreau Kusunoki and Australian company Genton was chosen by an international panel.
It set to have the largest exhibition gallery of any museum in the country.
Ms Havilah has since issued a statement to news.com.au, saying the new building will be a “highly connected and accessible museum”.
“Visitors will reach the Museum concierge from the entrance on Phillip Street,” she said.
“From the concierge visitors will be connected to 18,000 square metres of exhibition and public spaces and a Museum experience that has never been seen in Australia before.
“I am incredibly excited about the experience this design will deliver for the people of NSW.
“NSW deserves a 21st century museum experience and that is exactly what the new Powerhouse will deliver.
“As the design for the new Powerhouse is finalised in the coming months there will be many more exciting details to share.”