Rhodes industry history

Rhodes industrial history site map
Rhodes industrial history site map

In the 70 years from 1910 to 1980 Rhodes was arguably one of Australia’s most important industrial landscapes. G&C Hoskins developed a large ironworks in 1911 which later become Hoskins Port Kembla. Several years later in 1916 Lewis Berger opened Berger Paints supplying the 60,000 litres of paint needed to paint the new Sydney Harbour Bridge in 1932.

In 1919 land at the northern end of the Peninsula was developed by John Darling Flour Mills later becoming Allied Feeds. Tullochs Phoenix Ironworks built on the site that is now Rhodes Business Park. Until the 1980s Australia’s largest chemical industries including Union Carbide, CSR Chemicals and Orica shaped Rhodes resulting in heavy pollution. The industrial past is contentious yet it represents an important story line describing the nature and impacts of industries on both the river and the Peninsula. This experience has many dimensions not least that of the industrial workforce drawn from the local area.

In the 1970’s Rhodes consisted of two distinct areas – an industrial precinct to the west of the railway line and the southern section of the peninsula and a
predominately residential area to the north-east. The eastern residential section of the Peninsula remains relatively unchanged, consisting of predominately detached residential dwellings. An industrial area to the Peninsula’s north east (Leeds Street Industrial Precinct) also remains.

Remediation and redevelopment of Rhodes West industrial areas have transformed the Peninsula. Industrial sites have been replaced with a mix of retail, commercial and residential developments.These include the Rhodes Waterside Shopping Centre and Rhodes Corporate Park to the south and the current redevelopment of Rhodes West which consists of high density, transport oriented, mixed use development.

Page last updated on: 08/04/14

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