State Library of NSW

The State Library of New South Wales appointed SHAPE to convert existing office and collection material storage space into exhibition galleries and interactive learning spaces.

State Library of New South Wales


Client Project Manager:
Carmen Taing

Delivery Model:
Construction Management

Sydney, NSW

56 weeks

Project Size:
3,265 m2

Winner – 2019 Master Builders Award for Best Restoration / Re-use of a Historic Building $10M-$25M

This project consisted of a heavy demolition and refurbishment whilst operating in public areas.

The scope included:

  • The demolition of over 2,000 m2 of mezzanine slabs
  • Installation of a double lift shaft servicing four floors to both public spaces and secure floor
  • Major services upgrades and Building Code of Australia (BCA) compliance upgrades
  • A feature terrazzo marble staircase

The client’s brief required library operations to continue as normal with no disruption. Our team worked outside of regular operating hours for all demolition, noisy works and power shutdowns.

Innovative demolition methodologies were implemented through the use of a remote control Brokk robot. This mitigated the need to excessively reverse catch decks over five floors, and was also a safer alternative during the heavy demolition phase.

We addressed the challenge of working within close proximity of public spaces and state heritage artefacts through the effective site establishment addressing library concerns relating to site access, security, acoustic and dust. Our team also effectively coordinated and managed consultants through open communication to ensure swift problem solving.

The successful completion of this project by SHAPE allowed the State Library of New South Wales to showcase public collection material that has previously been in storage, in some instances for over 100 years.

The Library would like to thank the SHAPE team involved in the project (David Zaharija, Josh Klein, Steve Seif and Scott Seeho) for their expertise, professionalism and commitment. They have achieved an outstanding result under what proved to be exceptionally challenging circumstances and have contributed to the overall success of this landmark project! The end product has exceeded all expectations of the stakeholders. We wish SHAPE all the best for the future and look forward to other opportunities arising which may allow us to work together again.


Carmen Taing, Lead Capital Works Projects