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Sydney Opera House

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Sydney Opera House
General information
TypePerforming arts centre
Architectural styleExpressionist
LocationBennelong Point, Sydney
Coordinates33°51′31″S 151°12′51″E / 33.85861°S 151.21417°E / -33.85861; 151.21417Coordinates: 33°51′31″S 151°12′51″E / 33.85861°S 151.21417°E / -33.85861; 151.21417
Elevation4 m (13 ft)
Current tenants
Groundbreaking1 March 1959
Construction started1 March 1959
Inaugurated20 October 1973
CostA$102 million, equivalent to ~A$927 million in 2016[1]
Height65 m (213 ft)
Technical details
Structural systemConcrete frame & precast concrete ribbed roof
Other dimensions
  • length 183 m (600 ft)
  • width 120 m (394 ft)
  • area 1.8 ha (4.4 acres)
Design and construction
ClientNSW government
OwnerNSW Government
Main contractorCivil & Civic (level 1), M.R. Hornibrook (level 2 and 3 and interiors)
ArchitectJørn Utzon
Structural engineerOve Arup & Partners
Other information
Seating capacity
  • Concert Hall 2,679
  • Joan Sutherland Theatre 1,507
  • Drama Theatre 544
  • Playhouse 398
  • The Studio 400
  • Utzon Room 210
  • Total 5,738
Designated:2007 (31st session)
Reference #:166rev
State Party:Australia
Invalid designation
Criteria:a, b, e, f, g, h
Designated:12 July 2005
Reference #:105738
Invalid designation
Criteria:a, b, c, d, e, f, g
Designated:3 December 2003
Reference #:01685

The Sydney Opera House is an opera house and iconic building on the shores of Sydney Harbour, in Sydney, Australia. It is shaped like the sails of a boat. Many concerts and events take place there, with 2000 performances a year presented by Opera Australia, Australia's national opera company.[3] It is a famous tourist attraction.


The land where the Sydney Opera House stands is called Bennelong Point. Bennelong Point was once home to Fort Macquarie (the fort was built in 1817 and knocked down in 1901). On 10 August 1902, the Fort Macquarie Tram Depot was opened at Bennelong Point. The depot was knocked down in 1958. The Sydney Opera House was built on the same spot and the work began in 1959.

It was designed by Danish architect Jørn Utzon. He won a design competition in 1957. Utzon left the project in February 1966 because the government was not paying his invoices. The building finally opened on 20 October in 1973. The project was completed ten years later and cost more than fourteen times the original budget. In 2001, Utzon was invited back to restore the building and change it back towards his original designs.

Related pages


  1. "Inflation Calculator". RBA. 14 February 1966. Retrieved 10 March 2017. 
  2. Topographic maps 1:100000 9130 Sydney and 1:25000 91303N Parramatta River
  3. "About Opera Australia". Retrieved 31 August 2016. 

Other websites

Media related to Sydney Opera House at Wikimedia Commons

This article is about a World Heritage Site