The Customs House at 45 Alfred Street, on Circular Quay, was built in 1845 and replaced an earlier Customs House, built-in 1800. Colonel John Gibbes (1787-1873), Collector of Customs, commissioned the present building to cope with the rapidly growing colony. It was designed by Mortimer Lewis (1796-1879), an English architect who became Colonial Architect, with large windows so that approaching shipping could be observed.
Operations of the Customs Service was moved in 1990. It became a venue for exhibitions and private functions in 1994 and in 2003 became the home of the City of Sydney Library.
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