A mixture of 500,000 of Sydney’s recycled oyster shells and concrete will form 123 pillars that will hoist the new pavilion at Barangaroo.

Celebrating the elements of land, sea and sky, the pavilion will become a meeting place and cultural hub at Barangaroo’s Watermans Cove, designed to live long in the memories of children and adults who frequent it.

With a garden on the roof of the pavilion, grouped with the ‘oyster concrete’ compound, the pavilion designed by Spresser and Peter Besley is a sustainable, durable building that will become a landmark of Sydney’s Harbour district.

Receiving confirmation of winning the design competition in December 2020, Besley says he’s genuinely excited to produce a first rate and memorable monolith on Sydney’s doorstep for tourists and residents of the city alike.

"It will become a way of knowing where you are in the city. Instead of it being the hair brush of buildings that is any city, this is actually a civic monument as well as a place to be," he says.

Oysters are a highly sustainable seafood, with oyster farm practices far more environmentally conscious than that of tuna or prawns and their shells are able to be easily recycled. Additionally, the hard, rock-like quality of the shell is an obvious choice for a project of this type, where the sea is a significant part of both the area and the design itself.

The pillars will be grinded down with diamond machinery to reveal the oyster shells in the concrete. An 8m diameter oculus will sit at the top of the pavilion, accounting for the sky element of the pavilion. The pavilion will become a centrepiece for the Vivid festival, as well as various other events held in the public areas of Barangaroo.

The Barangaroo Pier Pavilion is scheduled to commence construction in mid-2021 with plans for it to be completed in late 2022. For more information, visit barangaroo.com/the-project/.

Image: NSW gov't