Earlier in the week the landmark 99 year old kiosk at the end of Saint Kilda pier burnt down. Premier of Victoria, Steve Bracks declared in the age yesterday that, "The reconstruction, which will be done as quickly as possible, will be done in accordance with the heritage requirements of the pier."
Later in the article: "The National Trust has predicted there will be debate over whether the original Victorian building should be replicated."
There will be a lot of locals wanting instant reconstruction of an identical building, feeling robbed of part of their history. It was also a unique example in Australia of its type. This crowd could look to the example of the West Pier in Brighton England, which has suffered both a fire and partial collapse in the past year. The powers that be have decided to restore the 1866 pier to its 1920 state, and throw a commercial building or two at the entry to the pier in order to make a buck out of it.
Yet this could be an opportunity for a significant contemporary structure that says more about St Kilda now than a victorian replica ever could.