Sydney’s Customs House is the oldest surviving customs building in Australia. Continuously occupied for 145 years, it’s a physical record of the history of the customs service and one of the most important remaining buildings at Circular Quay, along with Cadman’s Cottage.
Customs House is significant for its direct connection with 3 distinguished government architects, Mortimer Lewis, James Barnet and Walter Liberty Vernon.
Although Barnet and Vernon altered the work of their predecessors, they did so to create a unified construction. Their cohesive approach, separated by over half a century, is a wonderful design achievement.
While many interior features have been removed or concealed, the basic fabric of the building remains.
The lack of documentary evidence detailing the early stages of construction means the surviving building has become a valuable archaeological resource.
Ramp access is available at the main entrance of the building via 2 ramps. One ramp leads from Loftus Street and the other from Young Street.
Customs House has 2 accessible lifts that provide access to all floors. Access these lifts through 860mm wide electronic detection gates.
Customs House Library houses 2 unisex accessible toilets. One can be found on the ground floor behind the magazine collection. It has a right hand side transfer. Access to magazine area is through 860mm wide electronic detection gates. The other unisex accessible toilet is located on level 1 and has a left hand side transfer.
Unfortunately there’s no designated parking for Customs House visitors. There is no on-site dedicated accessible parking at Customs House.
There are 2 on-street mobility parking spaces 250m away on the western side of Pitt Street, south of Alfred Street.