Thursday, 9 April 2015

CBD Streets - Martin Place

Standing at the "top" of Martin Place close to Macquarie Street, looking into the setting sun. The topography is obvious. The building in the centre background is on George Street. It used to be a bank, but is now a Burberry.

Martin Place runs east-west between George Street and Macquarie Street, and is located about half-way between Sydney Town Hall and Circular Quay. It was created, in 1892, from a narrow lane that only ran between George and Castlereagh Streets. In 1935, Martin Place was pushed through to Macquarie Street, involving the demolition of some remarkable (but shabby-chic) terraces. Martin Place has now been a (staged) pedestrian precinct since 1971. I say staged as it is sliced (north-south) by Pitt Street, Castlereagh Street, and Elizabeth Streets.

The third incarnation of the GPO (General Post Office) was opened (facing the original laneway) in 1891. There is a hefty climb from George Street up to Macquarie Street, illustrating the fact that Sydney straddles ridges (Macquarie being one of them) and gullies (George being one of those).

The GPO clock tower was removed in 1942 to avoid being targeted in an air-raid. It was not replaced until 1964. The clock booms the hour.
Martin Place used to be bordered by the most imposing stand of sandstone colonial buildings one could ever hope to see. However, they are disappearing at a rate of knots. The developers say they are being remodelled. Even the GPO is not the GPO, but a hotel that none of us can afford to stay in.


Luis Gomez said...

Beautiful shots Julie. A favorite place in Sydney.

William Kendall said...

Wonderful perspective in these shots. Cosette is looking quite uneasy!

Julie said...

William, Cosette is uneasy because this [roduction has been described as "Les Mis on speed".

Bruce Caspersonn said...

I love it. I was there in 1942 when the sailors/marines from the US Pacific Fleet marched down. Sensational.