The Brisbane City Council’s City Planning Committee has recommended disapproval of the application for subdivision of a heritage-listed Goldicott House site in Toowong.
City Planning Chairman Councillor Matthew Bourke cited the failure to meet the Council’s strict criteria for a use of a Local Heritage Place as the reason for the rejection of the application.
The development application involves subdivision of the 12,340 sqm lot at 65 Grove Crescent, Toowong, converting the heritage convent building into a residential home, and demolition of The Music Room.
A total of 123 community submissions from the locals were considered in the BCC’s decision. “During its assessment, Council considered 123 submissions, including a submission from the National Trust, outlining concerns about heritage implications,” Cr Bourke said.
Residents’ submissions expressed concerns and opposition to the application citing environmental impact and worsening of traffic congestion. Locals are also concerned about the potential traffic danger to children of the nearby schools. Lastly, they are calling for the protection of cultural heritage buildings such as the Goldicott.
Locals United to Save Goldicott
A petition created through Change.org titled “Save Goldicott House” has already garnered over 2,600 signatures in support of the cause. Locals have also expressed their support through the Facebook page “Toowong Heritage – worth fighting for”.
“Council is committed to protecting Brisbane’s history, character and way of life by retaining the things we love about our city, as illustrated in the recent launch of Brisbane’s Future Blueprint and this means preserving our heritage places, their landscapes, views and settings,” said Cr Bourke.
Rebecca Kenny was elated by the news and said it was nice to see residents can make a change. Walter Taylor Ward Councilor Julian Simmonds was also pleased with the decision. “I’m delighted council’s heritage officers have reconsidered the state approval,’’ Cr Simmonds said.
Preserving Our Cultural Heritage for the Future
Goldicott, built in 1885 for Brisbane engineer Charles Lambert Depre, was the first to use poured concrete. Erecting the Goldicott house was a revolutionary innovation in construction at that time. In 1903, Goldicott was renamed Mount St Mary’s Convent after Sisters of Mercy purchased the property.
In 1998, Goldicott was listed in the Queensland Heritage Register. “The concrete construction was innovative and remarkable for its time. The place is significant for its association with engineer Charles Lambert Depree, and his contribution to concrete construction implementation and technology in 19th century Queensland,” Queensland Heritage Register citation said.