Rich history sparks listing

FOUR electricity substations have been nominated by Perth council to go onto the state’s heritage register.

Prompted by a request from the state heritage office, councillors voted unanimously to recommend the buildings’ inclusion.

Constructed as part of the first centralised electricity supply in Perth, the four substations are two-story red-brick buildings located on Wellingtont, Murray, Colin, and Stuart streets, the last being in Vincent.

All display aesthetic, historic, scientific and social value as documented by the SHO.

“The heritage value of these properties is quite clear…they are iconic, architecturally speaking,” said Cr Reece Harley, who is also a director of Heritage Perth.

• The Murray Street substation.

• The Murray Street substation.

“It’s proven that these power stations can be sensitively repurposed.”

In the same meeting, Cr Harley also spoke against demolishing 58 Thomas Street, even though the heritage listed building was seriously damaged in a fire earlier this year.

The lot was slated for demolition in order to make way for widening Thomas Street at the intersection with Hay Street.

Cr Judy McEvoy said widening the road would help traffic flow in the area.

“It’s a bottleneck in and out of the city there,” Cr McEvoy said.

“It is a bottleneck but cars are not the future of this city,” Cr Harley responded.

He also pointed out Perth typically doesn’t approve demolitions until there’s an approved development application, and expressed concern that without a clear timeframe for road widening, the empty land would turn into a sandy eyesore.

Council decided not to hold-off on the demolition, and the motion passed 6/2.

by TRILOKESH CHANMUGAM

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