Monday, July 13, 2009

Lonsdale House, Melbourne - Demolition by Neglect?

Lonsdale House - Demolition by Neglect?In recent weeks graffiti has appeared high on the side wall and upper floor windows of Lonsdale House, a fabulous Art Deco building in Melbourne. Even the iconic tower now has graffiti.

I have written about Lonsdale House before. The building is owned by Myer who along with their corporate bankers, Colonial First State Management Company, want to demolish the building to give their trucks better access to their nearby department store. They have now applied to the Minister for Planning, Justin Madden, for a demolition permit.

In the meantime though, while the Minister determines what decision he will make, shouldn't the owners have a duty of care to secure the building and protect it and those who gain access to it from coming to harm.

Today's photos, especially compared with an earlier shot at bottom, paint an ugly picture. Are these signs of demolition by neglect?

Lonsdale House - Demolition by Neglect?

Lonsdale House, Melbourne


  1. I noticed the graffiti too. You do wonder if by letting the building be graffitied and begin to look run down they hope to help their case that it is ok to demolish it.

  2. I'm sure Planning Minister wouldn't be swayed by such cosmetic issues.

  3. Hate to be the bearer of bad news, but according to an Age report, the planning minister Justin Madden has approved its demolition.

    "One of Melbourne’s landmark art-deco buildings - Lonsdale House - will be bulldozed to make way for a new CBD shopping centre as part of the Myer redevelopment".

  4. Yes I just saw it.

    Madden said Lonsdale House will 'make way for an iconic new entrance and improved access’.

    Nice legacy when the 'iconic new entrance' becomes just another shopping centre.

    A sad day for Melbourne.

  5. We have also just read the article in The Age and feel really annoyed both with the council and with Heritage Victoria for not giving it a listing.

    It is just so frustrating that buildings like these are being demolished to make way for more buildings without character and charm or anything to make them distinct from other buildings going up all over the city.

    Very disappointing..