North Sydney, New South Wales

North Sydney is a suburb and major commercial district on the Lower North Shore of Sydney, Australia. North Sydney is located 3 kilometres north of the Sydney central business district[2] and is the administrative centre for the local government area of North Sydney Council.

North Sydney
SydneyNew South Wales
North Sydney Skyline.jpg
North Sydney skyline at dusk
Population7,705 (2016 census)[1]
 • Density5,500/km2 (14,300/sq mi)
Elevation83 m (272 ft)
Area1.4 km2 (0.5 sq mi)
Location3 km (2 mi) north of Sydney CBD
LGA(s)North Sydney Council
State electorate(s)North Shore
Federal division(s)North Sydney
Suburbs around North Sydney:
Crows Nest Cammeray Cammeray
Waverton North Sydney Neutral Bay
McMahons Point Lavender Bay Milsons Point


Aborigines on the southern side of Port Jackson (Sydney Harbour) called the north side warung which meant the other side, while those on the northern side used the same name to describe the southern side.[3]

The first name used by European settlers was Hunterhill, named after a property owned by Thomas Muir of Huntershill (1765–1799), a Scottish political reformer. He purchased land in 1794 near the location where the north pylon of the Sydney Harbour Bridge is now located, and built a house which he named after his childhood home. This area north to Gore Hill became known as St Leonards. The township of St Leonards was laid out in 1836 in what is now North Sydney, bounded by what is now Miller, Walker, Lavender and Berry Streets. By 1846 there were 106 houses here and by 1859, the commercial centre had extended from Milsons Point to Miller Street. A bus service operated by Jeremiah Wall ran between Milsons Point and North Sydney Shops, and North Sydney thus developed its own identity.

Aerial view of North Sydney during construction of the Sydney Harbour Bridge.

The North Sydney municipality was incorporated in 1890 and after naming disputes, North Sydney was settled upon. The post office which opened in 1854 as St Leonards was changed to North Sydney in 1890. The first public school which opened in 1874 as St Leonards was renamed North Sydney in 1910.[4]

North Sydney underwent a dramatic transformation into a commercial hub in 1971–72. In this period no less than 27 skyscrapers were built.[5]


The history of the North Sydney tramway system can be divided into three periods – the first from the original opening in 1886 to 1909, when the McMahons Point line opened. The second period covers the time until the Wynyard line was opened across the Sydney Harbour Bridge in 1932, and the third until construction of the Cahill Expressway on the eastern side of Sydney Harbour Bridge and the wider closure of the system in 1962.[6]

The first part of the North Sydney tramway system was a double-track cable tramway which commenced at the original Milsons Point Ferry wharf, located where the north pylon of the Harbour Bridge is now. The line originally extended via Alfred St (now Alfred Street South), Junction St (now Pacific Highway), Blue St and Miller Sts to the engine house and depot in Ridge St. It used cable grip cars called "dummies" and un-powered trailer cars.

A feature of these lines was the underground tram terminus at Wynyard railway station (the only one in Australia), and the tracks over the Sydney Harbour Bridge. Trams ran from Blue St, North Sydney over a now-demolished steel arch bridge over the Harbour Bridge Roadway, then over the eastern side of the harbour bridge (now road lanes), through a tram platform at Milsons Point railway station, before descending underground into platforms 1 and 2 of Wynyard station.

Heritage listingsEdit

Woodstock (1870), one of the last 19th century homes on the Pacific Highway, was the home of John Brown, an early settler in the area
HSBC Building (built in 1931 as a Bank of New South Wales Branch)

North Sydney has a number of heritage-listed sites, including those listed on the New South Wales State Heritage Register:

The following buildings are heritage-listed on other heritage registers:[16]

  • Chinese Christian Church, Alfred Street
  • Christ Church, Walker and Lavender Streets
  • Church of England Rectory, Lavender Street
  • Houses: 11–37 Walker Street and 20–30 Walker Street
  • Mercedes, 9 Walker Street
  • St Francis Xavier's War Memorial Church, Mackenzie Street
  • St Francis Xavier's Presbytery, Mackenzie Street
  • St Francis Xavier's Church School Hall, Mackenzie Street
  • St Peter's Presbyterian Church and Manse, Blues Point Road
  • St Thomas's Church of England, West and Church Streets
  • St Thomas's Kindergarten Hall, Church and McLaren Streets
  • St Thomas's Church Rectory, McLaren Street
  • Woodstock, Pacific Highway[17]

Commercial areaEdit

North Sydney's high-rise commercial district

The commercial district of North Sydney includes the second largest concentration of office buildings in New South Wales, with a large representation from the advertising and information technology industries. Advertising, marketing businesses and associated trades such as printing have traditionally dominated the business life of the area though these have been supplanted to a certain extent by information technology businesses. Corporations whose offices are in North Sydney include: Nine Entertainment Co, Cisco Systems, Vocus Communications, NBN Co, Novell, Sun Microsystems, AGL, Hyundai, AAMI, Sophos, Symantec, Nando's, Vodafone and NAB.

Unlike other major suburban hubs within the Sydney metropolitan area, North Sydney has limited shopping facilities and almost no Sunday trading. There are four supermarkets (Aldi, IGA, Coles and Woolworths Metro). The main shopping complex is the Greenwood Plaza, which is connected to North Sydney station.[18] Berry Square is another shopping centre in Berry Street, formerly known as North Sydney Shopping World.[19]


According to the 2016 census, there were 7,705 residents in the suburb of North Sydney. 48.1% of residents were born in Australia. The most common countries of birth were England 5.5%, India 4.3%, China 3.6%, New Zealand 3.2% and United States 1.9%. 63.6% of residents spoke only English at home. Other languages spoken at home included Mandarin 4.1%, Cantonese 2.9%, Hindi 2.0%, Spanish 1.7% and Japanese 1.7%. The most common responses for religion in North Sydney were No Religion 36.7% and Catholic 21.4%.[1]


North Sydney is directly linked to the Sydney CBD by road and rail across the Sydney Harbour Bridge. North Sydney railway station is on the North Shore railway line of the Sydney Trains network. Bus services by Busways, Forest Coach Lines, Hillsbus and Keolis Downer Northern Beaches are heavily present in Blue Street, connecting train and bus services towards North Sydney's neighbouring suburbs as well as connecting train services to Richmond via City from the T1 North Shore & Northern Lines. The Warringah Freeway links North Sydney south to the Sydney CBD and north to Chatswood. High Street, North Sydney wharf is a wharf served by Neutral Bay ferry services, which is part of the Sydney Ferries network. It is possible to walk from parts of North Sydney to the city centre in less than 30 minutes, by way of the Sydney Harbour Bridge.

A new Victoria Cross metro station, located two blocks north of the existing North Sydney railway station, is planned to open in 2024 as part of the Sydney Metro City & Southwest project.

Places of worshipEdit

St Mary's Church

Churches include St Mary's Catholic Church on Miller Street, St Francis Xavier's War Memorial Church in Mackenzie Street, St Thomas Anglican Church on West and Church Streets, Christ Church on Walker and Lavender Streets, St Peter's Presbyterian Church and Manse on Blues Point Road and Chinese Christian Church on Alfred Street.

Hare Krishna Temple is located on the corner of Falcon Street and Miller Street.[20]


Primary schools include North Sydney Demonstration School, Mosman Preparatory School and St Marys Primary School.

High schools include the public North Sydney Boys High School and North Sydney Girls High School, Cammeraygal High School, the Catholic Marist Catholic College North Shore and Monte Sant' Angelo Mercy College and independent schools Wenona School and Sydney Church of England Grammar School (Shore).

St Aloysius' College of Milson's Point and Loreto Kirribilli are also within the confines of the North Sydney local government area. Post-secondary education providers include the Australian Catholic University, APM College of Business and Communication, Raffles College of Design and Commerce, Walker and Miller Training and Billy Blue College of Design.


A WWI German Field Gun in St Leonards Park. The State War Trophy Committee allocated the gun to Council in 1921. It was unveiled by Major-General Sir Granville Ryrie[1].

Sport and recreationEdit

St Leonards Park which includes North Sydney Oval is the suburbs major recreation area, popular among joggers and those wishing to walk their dogs. North Sydney Ovals are notably cricket pitches during the summer and the home ground for the Northern Suburbs Rugby Union Club and the North Sydney Bears Rugby League Club during the winter.

The Norths Pirates Junior Rugby Union Club, is North Sydneys local junior village rugby union team who play all home games at Tunks Park in the adjoining suburb of Cammeray together with North Sydney Brothers, a junior rugby league club and the rugby league teams of Marist College North Shore.

During the 2000 Summer Olympics, the city was the starting point of the marathon course that would end 26.2 mi (42.2 km) later at the Olympic Stadium in Sydney.[22]

Notable peopleEdit


The local government area of North Sydney Council includes the suburb of North Sydney and the surrounding suburbs of Crows Nest, Waverton, Neutral Bay, McMahons Point, Kirribilli, Cremorne (divided between North Sydney & Mosman) and Cammeray.



  1. ^ a b Australian Bureau of Statistics (27 June 2017). "North Sydney (State Suburb)". 2016 Census QuickStats. Retrieved 4 July 2017.  
  2. ^ Gregorys Street Directory, Gregorys Publishing Company, 2007
  3. ^ Attenbrow, Dr Val. "Place Names Chart". Australian Museum. Australian Museum. Retrieved 4 June 2018.
  4. ^ The Book of Sydney Suburbs, Compiled by Frances Pollon, Angus & Robertson Publishers, 1990, Published in Australia ISBN 0-207-14495-8, page 191
  5. ^ Sydney Architecture
  6. ^ D Keenan: The North Sydney lines of the Sydney tramway system. Transit Press November 1987 ISBN 0-909338-05-1
  7. ^ "North Sydney Technical High School (former)". New South Wales State Heritage Register. Office of Environment & Heritage. H00517. Retrieved 18 May 2018.
  8. ^ "Graythwaite". New South Wales State Heritage Register. Office of Environment & Heritage. H01617. Retrieved 18 May 2018.
  9. ^ "MP 10_0149 - Graythwaite Concept Plan".
  10. ^ "Stand Against Development at Graythwaite". Archived from the original on 16 August 2011. Retrieved 20 April 2020.
  11. ^ "Sewer Vent". New South Wales State Heritage Register. Office of Environment & Heritage. H01641. Retrieved 18 May 2018.
  12. ^ "St Leonards Park". New South Wales State Heritage Register. Office of Environment & Heritage. H01941. Retrieved 18 May 2018.
  13. ^ "Don Bank". New South Wales State Heritage Register. Office of Environment & Heritage. H00031. Retrieved 18 May 2018.
  14. ^ "North Sydney Post Office". New South Wales State Heritage Register. Office of Environment & Heritage. H01417. Retrieved 18 May 2018.
  15. ^ "Kailoa". New South Wales State Heritage Register. Office of Environment & Heritage. H00179. Retrieved 18 May 2018.
  16. ^ The Heritage of Australia, Macmillan Company, 1981, p.2/45-47
  17. ^ State Heritage Register
  18. ^ "Greenwood Plaza".
  19. ^ "North Sydney Shopping World". Archived from the original on 24 February 2004.
  20. ^ "ISKCON Sydney".
  21. ^ See "RugbyNet - Norths Pirates Junior Rugby Union Club". Archived from the original on 28 June 2012. Retrieved 28 June 2012.
  22. ^ 2000 Summer Olympics official report. Archived 9 November 2000 at the Wayback Machine Volume 1. p. 106.

External linksEdit

Coordinates: 33°50′23″S 151°12′19″E / 33.83965°S 151.20541°E / -33.83965; 151.20541