The Entry & Foyers project will transform the way the outside of the Opera House connects with the inside.
Jørn Utzon described the journey across the Opera House Forecourt and up the Monumental Steps as one of moving 'from the ordinary to the extraordinary'.
The newly paved and vehicle-free Forecourt, enabled by the loading dock that opened last year and redirected 1000 heavy-vehicle movements a week underground, has helped realise this vision.
The Entry & Foyers project will continue the experience all the way under the Monumental Steps, turning the 3000 square-metre area that has become the Opera House's second front door into a vibrant, welcoming, car-free entrance and meeting place.
Utzon imagined this space as another foyer, where 'the soffit of the podium', would 'form the first impression of the building,' defined by the 'marked sculptural effect' of the beams.
Digital art canvases, new seating and streamlined services and safer access.
Digital art canvases, in line with Utzon's original vision for artwork to inspire visitors as they enter the Opera House;
New seating for people to gather and dwell;
Even paving in signature Opera House granite, replacing bitumen to make the area lighter and reduce glare and convert the whole area from our front gates to our front door into a pedestrian-friendly zone, with easier and safer access; and
Additionally, new escalators will take patrons from the entry Under the Steps to an entirely upgraded main box-office foyer.
These new designs update and streamline cloaking, toilets and ticketing services. The foyer also includes new comfortable seating and a lounge where people can mingle throughout the day, and before and after performances.
Construction Under the Steps will take place in 2018. Work on the new foyer is expected to start in 2017 will be built in two stages to ensure the box office continues to serve patrons throughout. The east side works are expected to start in 2017 and the west side works in 2019.