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McGregor Coxall has been announced as the landscape architect for the Sydney Modern Project which will see a major expansion of the Art Gallery of New South Wales.

The Sydney-based firm will work in collaboration with Tokyo based architectural and design firm SANAA, who were selected as the architects for the Art Gallery expansion project from a design competition that included concepts by Kengo Kuma & Associates, RMA Architects, David Chipperfield, Renzo Piano Workshop and Herzog and de Meuron, among others.

McGregor Coxall will design the public domain and gardens for the site together with facilitating the Gallery’s integration within the precinct including The Domain and Royal Botanic Gardens.

Fairfax Media reports that McGregor Coxall was selected through a competitive process by an expert panel which included representatives from the Royal Botanic Gardens and SANAA.

The Sydney Modern Project will transform the site to the north of the existing Gallery with a series of pavilions that are stacked with the topopgraphy down towards that Domain, the Royal Botanic Gardens, Sydney Harbour, the Sydney Opera House, the CBD and Woolloomooloo.

The SANAA and McGregor Coxall design will preserve the two 19th-century facades of the existing Gallery, protect heritage trees and retain The Domain’s much-used playing fields.

The concept design for the Sydney Modern Project engages strongly with the surrounding landscape and communities. Supported by the cultural plaza and flexible outdoor public spaces the buildings can take maximum advantage of the Royal Botanic Gardens backdrop.

McGregor Coxall says that their team understands the masterplanning and delivery complexities of extending a large art museum whilst maintaining visitor operations and gallery functions.

Commenting on the news of his firm’s design competition win, founding McGregor Coxall Director Adrian McGregor said that the project is an opportunity to leave a globally significant cultural legacy for Sydney befitting the beauty of Sydney Harbour and the landscape heritage of Farm Cove.

Sydney Modern is due for completion in 2021, in time for the Art Gallery of NSW’s 150th anniversary.