For almost a hundred years, Melburnians have been looking at ways to better connect the city with the Yarra River, which had been rudely taken away from them by the Public Transport corporation. One story is well known, the drawn out Gas and Fuel to Federation Square saga. On the other side of the bridge, it’s been no less drawn out.
They really want to hang out in the past down at the Parks Branch. They’re about to bowl anything in Fitzroy Gardens that looks like it was built after 1939, after a spot of public consultation. They’ve lept on Heritage Victoria’s advice that the only decent things in the garden were built in the nineteenth century, at the turn of that century, and in the Inter-war period, which Parks mistakenly think ended in 1945. They appear to have taken their obligation to look after items from these periods as a license to obliterate anything else.
12.05.10 in heritage
This could be the last chance to have a good look around the Naval and Military Club in Little Collins Street, Melbourne. The low-rise 1967 building with its distinctive arched windows is due to tumble soon, a new planning proposal having been approved for a Buchan designed 32 storey hotel and apartment complex.
The upcoming demolition of Lonsdale House, an art deco building in Melbourne’s dowdy Lonsdale Street, is attracting attention that must be worrying the developers and Myer. A brief survey of recent developments turns up calls to arms, critiques of Melbourne’s heritage policy, and thoughts about what inner Melbourne should strive to be.
An Albert Park resident is having the usual problems trying to demolish his “bog standard” deco house, and has gone to the press with it as consultant fees top 150K. “When we’ve put extensions to [the council] previously they said they didn’t like architecture that mimicked previous periods… Then we bring in a contemporary design and they say it introduces new elements. I thought they were a bunch of megalomaniac tossers.”
Denton Corker Marshall is working with the Halim Group on a design for a 15 storey tower behind the historic Windsor Hotel. The tower will reportedly wipe out part of the Hard Rock Cafe – no great loss there. But the National Trust isn’t happy – CEO Martin Purslow saying, “This proposal is over twice the statutory height limit under Melbourne’s planning scheme. It says the statutory height limit is to preserve the scale of the Bourke Hill precinct, and that’s the bloody reason we have these limits.”