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Last plea to save offices

DAVID KILLICK   | The Mercury

January 19, 2011 12.01am

THE 43-year-old government office tower at 10 Murray St is part of a “threatened generation of city buildings” and should be saved from demolition, a planning tribunal has heard.

Final arguments in the appeal against Citta Property Group’s $100 million Parliament Square development were heard in the Resource Management Planning and Appeal Tribunal yesterday.

The main objector is the Save 10 Murray group which wants the building preserved because of its heritage significance and architectural qualities.

The Parliament Square redevelopment is intended to revitalise the block of government buildings between Parliament House and Davey St.

It has prompted controversy because the plans include the demolition of several historically or architecturally significant buildings including the 14-storey Murray St office tower and the former Government Printing Office in Salamanca Place.

Save 10 Murray’s lawyer Shaun McElwaine said two reports used to bolster the case for redevelopment were flawed.

“The evidence put forward in favour of demolition suffers a number of defects and should be rejected,” he said.

“The persons who say this building is of such low significance it should be knocked down did not study here, do not practise here and have not spent much time here.

“It is an important building in the Tasmanian context, although it is maligned by some.”

Mr McElwaine said 10 Murray St was one of just five surviving state office blocks built during the post-war boom.

“We’ve got a heritage watchdog with their eye off the ball. They swallowed the developer’s line,” he said.

A revised proposal for the site is being considered by the Sullivans Cove Waterfront Authority.

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The arts and musical festival MONA FOMA is underway currently in Hobart…

The venue for many of the events is the revamped Princes Wharf 1, with smaller acts appearing on a stage in the courtyard area.  It’s a position that is effectively backgrounded by 10 Murray Street, Tasmania’s iconic 1960s State Offices building.

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Appeals stall project

The Examiner, 23 May, 2010

The redevelopment of Hobart’s Parliament Square has hit a few obstacles, writes ZOE EDWARDS.

THE developer charged with revamping Hobart’s Parliament Square precinct says the multimillion-dollar project is running smoothly and on budget, despite planning appeals delaying the start of work.

Sydney-based developer Citta Property Group proposes to convert the area behind Parliament House into an open and grassed public space, including an amphitheatre with a giant outdoor screen, bars, eateries and office space.

The space is currently full of unused heritage-listed buildings, car parks and State Government offices.

The Sullivans Cove Waterfront Authority in February approved the demolition of government high-rise 10 Murray Street, a row of buildings along Salamanca Place and the red brick annexe off Parliament House.

The planning go-ahead has sparked a number of appeals against the redevelopment, namely by a group intent on saving 10 Murray and the heritage- listed Printing Authority building from the demolition ball.

(more…)

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It’s not easy being a Brute
Paul Johnston
01.12.09

Paul Johnston explains why many believe the destruction of 10 Murray Street will be a tragic blow to the legacy of Australia’s modernist pioneers.

Stylistic attributes are never the best way to understand modern architecture. In Tasmania, where architectural influences are filtered by isolation and mixed with the rich context of landscape, modern architecture of the 1960s took on a rawness that expressed a cultural assurance and monumentality that has not been evident since. However, the label ‘brutalism’

is now used as a means of derision in the public sphere, to the detriment of architecture as a whole.

The proposal to demolish the State Offices at 10 Murray Street in Hobart recalls the long debate over the future of Council House in Perth, a battle that is now considered a benchmark in the defence of modern Australian architecture. The similarities are surprising, and this raises questions as to whether we have been able to engender any appreciation at all of modernism as cultural heritage. …

Read the article here: http://australiandesignreview.com/response/14678-It-s-not-easy-being-a-Brute

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