Electricity Substation 277 Lane Cove is on the NSW Heritage Register

Over the next few months, In The Cove will be examining Lane Cove’s historic buildings and in particular the buildings on the NSW Heritage Register. Last week we looked at the Virginia Ann Hair Salon at the Burns Bay Road Shops.

Electricity Substation 277

electricity substation lane cove

This week we are looking at a very different type of building listed on the NSW Heritage Register – Substation 277 located on Birdwood Lane next to the Rosenthal Avenue Car Park, Lane Cove.

Why are Electricity Substations on the NSW Heritage Register?

The Substation dates back to about 1929. A metal plaque attached to the façade reads, “M.C. of S. ELECTRICITY SUBSTATION No. 277”.  It was constructed by the Municipal Council of Sydney as a part of the rapid expansion of the suburban electricity network in the 1920s. There are many electrical substations included on the register as they were important in the industrial roll out around Sydney. This particular substation was purpose built for the site.

According to the NSW Department of Environment and Heritage’s website:

In 1904, the year in which the first power station in Sydney commenced operations, the Municipal Council of Sydney (MCS) was formed to produce and distribute electric light and power to central Sydney. From 1904 until 1935 the MCS, as both an electricity generation and distribution authority, constructed hundreds of small distribution substations throughout Sydney, many of which are still in service. The MCS supplied electricity to retail customers around the inner city, inner west and lower north shore and provided bulk power to outer western and northern suburbs such as Penrith, Hornsby and Manly.

Some electrical substations are now used as cafes and residences. ITC wonders if this substation will ever be used for another purpose. Today it is looking a bit unloved.

electricity substation two

You can see the full list of Lane Cove properties on the NSW Heritage Register here.

Lane Cove Historical Society

If you are a history buff, you may want to consider joining the Lane Cove Historical Society. Their details are here. The Lane Cove Historical Society is currently running a Lane Cove History Prize Competition.

The aim of the Lane Cove History Prize is to encourage original research into the history of Lane Cove and its environs, extending knowledge of the area and its people. It is intended that the research will contribute to an enriched understanding of Lane Cove, both past and present.

The results of the research will be published in the LCHS Journal and lodged with the Lane Cove Library Local Studies Unit for the wider information of the public, and preserved for the use of future researchers.

In 2017, entrants may submit:


An essay (illustrated where appropriate) of 5,000 to 7,000 words,


An Oral History produced digitally as a video or audio recording on USB stick or disc of 30-45 minutes duration. This must be accompanied by a written transcription.

You can find out more about the Lane Cove History Prize here

Which Lane Cove building do you think should be listed on the NSW Heritage Register?

Do you have a local issue you would like help with? ITC is here to help just email us at [email protected]