Paddington Reservoir Gardens

Episode: 3
Title: Paddington Reservoir Gardens
Broadcast: 2 April 2016
Presenter: Nigel Ruck

Nigel takes us to one of Sydney’s best inner city gardens, Paddington Reservoir Gardens. Escape the hustle and bustle of busy Oxford Street as you enter the beautiful sunken gardens with so many special elements and a fascinating history merged together in a winning combination.

  • The reservoir was built in the 1860’s and operated until 1899 when the Centennial Park Reservoir was commissioned. After it closed the Water Board used it for storage, and from 1914 to 1934 it was used as a garage and workshop.
  • Paddington Municipal Council then bought the reservoir and leased the western chamber for a service station while the eastern chamber was still occupied by the Water Board until the later 1950s.
  • The service station continued to operate under various lessees until 1990 when the roof collapsed. The reservoir was then closed off and unused, with a further roof collapse occurring in 1993.
  • Some of the roof remains today as part of a rooftop garden.
  • There are new sections and boardwalks that were added when the space was transformed between 2006 and 2009.
  • Architects Tonkin Zulaikha Greer and landscape architects JMD Design began work to conserve, restore and reuse the space of the then derelict Paddington Reservoir into this award winning urban oasis.
  • Many of the original structures and features have been kept and restored giving a Roman ruin feel to the place.
  • These original features have been complimented with contemporary materials, steel, aluminum and concrete.

P: (02) 9265 9333