Month: January 2017

Protecting Melbourne’s History

The city of Melbourne in Victoria, Australia is considered relatively young but it is home to some stunning Victorian style buildings that have been built since the late 1800s. Melbourne has its fair share of historical buildings that have lasted beyond its era and are still standing among modern architecture, giving a city just a hint of its past. When walking in the city centre, one can soak in the vibe of the 1880s gold rush where buildings such as the Grand Hotel and Melbourne post office were built. One may also reminiscence about pre-war periods when strolling past The Auditorium or The City Watch House.

Many of these heritage buildings have been acknowledged for their historical and educational value and the government has institutionalized their protection and conservation. These buildings have also given the city an old world charm that mingles with existing modern architecture, creating an interesting character for the city. While some buildings have clear significance to the city council and population, others face the daily threat of being torn down at the expense of newer architecture. After all, the city cannot remain in the past. It has to expand, modernize and progress as well as meet the requirements of a growing population and modern architecture. 

For buildings that are recognized as protected, there are rules in which building owners have to adhere to conserve the structure. Heritage roofing may need to be checked at regular intervals and restored where necessary with the services of government certified repairmen. Some of these old buildings will also have Spanish slate roofs which are very expensive materials and can be very fragile when they have aged. Professional patio builders Bellarine may have to be engaged so that they can locate the same type of slate that was used. 

Building exteriors will need to be cleaned with care so that it is not damaged with the help of a well reputed company. There may also be building restrictions on neighboring plots as buildings may share walls or support structures and care has to be taken not to damage historical sites during the construction process of new adjoining buildings. 

Amidst attempts at modernizing and transforming the city, Melbourne has realized the importance of its historical buildings and has taken a stand to protect them. While it is a tough call for the government to decide which buildings to conserve and which to demolish, they have to make calculated decisions on which buildings to let go for the birth of new buildings. The city people do make their voices heard when they think that the city council is making a wrong decision. While their efforts may to be too little too late at times, information that is released through the news can help vested parties intercept and change the council’s decision. Ultimately, historical buildings are kept and maintained for the benefit of the city’s population and voicing their opinion can be crucial to conserving the city’s past.