At least 900 objections to Ballarat Civic Hall plan

SUPPORTERS of the effort to stop Civic Hall being knocked down have come out in force, with at least 900 objections lodged with council over its planning application for demolition. 

Objections to the council’s planning application close today, with the battle to save the hall set to continue for months to come. 

Art Deco and Modernism Society president Robin Grow said he was objecting to the demolition on a number of grounds.

He said the building was not redundant, that the environmental impact of demolition would be high, and that council had not provided information on what it planned to do after demolition. Mr Grow said Civic Hall was a good example of a late art deco building that was similar to a number of other structures in other regional centres.

He said Civic Hall’s heritage status was unfairly treated because it was built some years after those similar buildings, despite its plans being drawn up in the 1930s.

“It’s a tribute to Ballarat that they just kept going and going and going until they got something built,” he said.

Mr Grow said he hoped council was just testing out whether the demolition plan had any legs or not.

“We’re hoping that they will look at all of the objections, many of which are well documented and well reasoned, and they will say, ‘no, we’re being pretty silly here’,” he said.

Civic Hall support Jonathan Halls said the original construction of the building had been completed after a democratic process, including a plebiscite.

“It’s not in the spirit of democracy,” he said of the current process. 

tom.cowie@fairfaxmedia.com.au

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