The Edward Millen Adaptive Heritage and Landscape Redevelopment project is being delivered under the Land Asset Optimisation Strategy. The project aims to realise the full potential of the heritage-listed buildings and the expansive 4.7 hectare Edward Millen Reserve to minimise the on-going cost to maintain the precinct and maximise the benefit to the community of the amazing heritage assets there.
The buildings include the Rotunda Hospital, the Mildred Creak Centre, Hillview Clinic, a former operating theatre, and a boiler room. These buildings are to undergo significant repairs and/or redevelopment for an innovative, adaptive heritage redevelopment of the precinct. The buildings maintain a prominent and elevated location set back from Albany Highway within large historically-significant grounds.
A recently finalised Landscape MasterPlan covers the grounds within the precinct. The masterplan was undertaken with extensive community consultation and has been endorsed by Council to progress to detailed design.
The project has some tough obstacles it still needs to overcome. All the buildings require significant and costly repairs and upgrades to achieve viable adaptive re-use and subsequent activation.
Heritage buildings have an important and critical place in the locations they occupy, from an architectural perspective but equally the significance of use they had within the community. The heritage conservation requirements of the buildings and the reserve have varying degrees of significance.
There is also a heritage memorial on the title and all development applications will need the Department of Planning, Lands and Heritage’s consent.
Until recently only civic and community uses were allowed within the buildings due to State Government conditions imposed on the precinct. These conditions meant that the Town has been unable to deliver beneficial and sustainable outcomes and redevelopment which the community would benefit from and expects. With the community engagement process complete and the change of land use now approved by the State Government, a variety of commercial-type uses can now be delivered, whilst maintaining strong community and cultural benefits.
The opportunity is now available to try and deliver a well-considered and respectful adaptive re-use heritage redevelopment result for the community. The aim is to for the buildings to be financially self-sufficient and to maintain the integrity of the buildings for future generations whilst delivering outcomes that benefit the community.
Heritage adaptive re-use development
The Town has completed market sounding and feasibility options analysis to assess the commercial viability of a heritage adaptive re-use redevelopment and has now endorsed a business case that outlines the future of the precinct. There are significant cost barriers to make the project appealing to any partnership with the private sector and so the Town will explore a range of funding options aimed at creating a catalyst for the private sector to redevelop the buildings whilst also striking a balance between new uses, commercial needs, cultural activities and other desires of the community.
Detailed design for the Landscape Master Plan is currently underway. The upgrades of this expansive reserve will complement the expression of interest process for the heritage redevelopment and will aim to attract interested private sector groups. The expression of interest will seek a balance between community and cultural aspirations for the building and the required level of capital and expertise in delivering a destination redevelopment.
- Edward Millen Park Landscape Master Plan detailed design
- Expression of interest campaign
- $4m heritage and restoration work funded by the Federal Government.
The project value is $20+ million with expected completion date of 30 June 2024.
Take a virtual walkthrough tour of Edward Millen House here.
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