An extraordinary story of survival against the odds.
The story of brutalist Sirius begins with the 1970s Battle for The Rocks and a Green Ban, which saved an historic precinct and a community. The Green Ban held for four years during which there was no building activity until everyone agreed to build Sirius, an example of brutalism in Sydney. Tao Gofers, the architect of Sirius, explains how this agreement was reached and how he designed a vertical village – perhaps the last, and arguably the most successful, tower built for public housing in this era.
In 2014 the government announced it was selling Sirius as a site for 250 luxury apartments. Sirius and its residents were to be erased from the landscape. A groundswell of public support for Sirius and its residents was ignored and a recommendation to list Sirius on the Heritage Register was rejected by the government. Now the courts have said the government’s actions were illegal. Myra, 91 years old and blind, was the last resident of Sirius. For almost four years her SOS lights were turned on every night.
* Shortlisted for the Cornish Family Prize for Art and Design Publishing
John Dunn, Ben Peake, Amiera Piscopo
Published November 2017
228mm x 170mm