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Mould Loft (Building 6)

Cockatoo Island, Sydney, NSW, Australia

data, awards, description

Allen Jack+Cottier’s adaptive reuse of Cockatoo Island’s historic Mould Loft provides a flexible, contemporary space that preserves its colonial past.

Reviving history Operated as a convict gaol in the mid-1800s, Sydney’s Cockatoo Island became a major shipbuilding and dockyard facility. The Mould Loft, aka Building 6, is a warehouse-style, early-twentieth-century building that shares this maritime heritage.

Historic renewal Working with the Sydney Harbour Federation Trust, AJ+C re-developed the loft into a popular events space. The re-design protects and highlights key aspects such as the loft’s floor, which offers physical record of ships built on the island. Visible scars on the building’s fabric have been preserved to reflect the rich history that shaped the site. Along with striking exposed trusses, weathered floorboards retain the building’s industrial character.

Modern remediation Expansive studio windows optimise views of the surrounding harbour. Electrical and hydraulic services were renewed, and ventilation, accessibility and fire safety issues improved to bring Mould Loft into the modern era.

  • Date
  • Client
    Sydney Harbour Federation Trust
  • Cost
    A$1.6 million
  • Heritage Listing
    National Heritage List (Cockatoo Island); Commonwealth Heritage List (Cockatoo Island)
  • Original Construction
    Early 20th century
  • Original Use
    Mould loft for ship building
  • New Building Use
    Artists' studios, workshops, exhibition spaces

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