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DESIGN & STYLE

The World Heritage-Listed Royal Exhibition Building Is Reopening Its Rooftop Deck

It'll be open to the public and have 360-degree-views — just like the one it boasted back in the 1880s.
By Libby Curran
March 07, 2019
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The World Heritage-Listed Royal Exhibition Building Is Reopening Its Rooftop Deck

It'll be open to the public and have 360-degree-views — just like the one it boasted back in the 1880s.
By Libby Curran
March 07, 2019
  shares

Melbourne's on track to score a brand-new rooftop deck, complete with stunning panoramic views, but it won't be making its home atop some pub or nightclub. Nope, this one's set to grace the top level of the World Heritage-listed Royal Exhibition Building, in the heart of Carlton Gardens.

It's part of Museums Victoria's Royal Exhibition Building Protection and Promotion Project, which will bring back to life the sky-high Dome Promenade, a walking platform that circles the dome, the building boasted back in the 1880s. Once restored, the promenade will feature 360-degree views and its own exhibition, accessed by a new lift installed in the same spot as the original elevator.

With a new façade also in the works, the $20 million government-funded project isn't slated to be completed until next year, but in the meantime you can expect to see a lot more than just a boring old building site.

Unveiled today, the building's scaffolding has had quite the makeover, featuring a 26-metre-tall artwork, entitled Sylph of Spring. Carefully printed onto shade cloth, the enchanting figure is a reinterpretation of a painting found on the inside of the building's famed dome. One that's probably all too familiar with uni students who've sat underneath smashing out those exams.

A render of the 'Sylph of Spring'.

The 139-year-old Royal Exhibition Building, which regularly houses festivals and fairs, was designed by architect Joseph Reed (who also designed Melbourne Town Hall) and completed in 1880. It's one of just three World Heritage-listed cultural sites in Australia. The other two are the Sydney Opera House and a collection of Australian Convict Sites spread across Australia.

The Royal Exhibition Building's new rooftop deck, façade and exhibition are slated for completion in early 2020.

Published on March 07, 2019 by Libby Curran

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