The NSW government has reportedly backflipped on its decision to relocate Sydney’s Powerhouse Museum more than five years after the announcement was made.

The industrial science museum in Sydney’s inner-Sydney Ultimo will not be closed and moved to Parramatta but will operate across both sites, the Sydney Morning Herald reported on Saturday.

In February 2015, a month before the NSW election, then-premier Mike Baird announced controversial plans for the Powerhouse move.

The relocation was slated to cost between $420 million and $645 million, with the staged closure of the Ultimo site due to have begun on July 1.

“Sydney is a global city of more than five million people and this will allow us to provide an outstanding visitor experience in the areas of technology, science, engineering and design at two major locations,” Premier Gladys Berejiklian said.

“It will mean far more people have access to many more of the amazing exhibits held by the Powerhouse and importantly, help us create vibrant centres to inspire learning in the fields of sciences and applied arts for the next generation.”

The government says retaining the Powerhouse at Ultimo would make sure several hundred people remain employed at the site, the SMH reported.

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The new museum in western Sydney will also create more than 1100 construction jobs, 2400 indirect jobs, and employ hundreds more people once opened.

The state government last year said the Powerhouse Precinct in Parramatta was on track for opening in 2023.

AAP