HCC Coat of Arms.jpg
City of hobart

Supporting Information

City Planning Committee Meeting




Monday, 28 November 2016

AT 5:00 pm

VENUE: Lady Osborne Room, Town Hall





7.1.1   1-3 Elizabeth Street, Hobart - Partial Change of Use (Mawson's Hut Replica Museum)

Attachment c      PLN-16-1065 - EL066 1-3 ELIZABETH STREET HOBART TAS 7000 - Planning Referral Officer Report............................................... 2

Attachment d      Heritage Comment from PLN-13-00696 for PLN016-1065 Mawson's Hut                                                                                                           3          

Item No. 7.1.1

Supporting Information

City Planning Committee Meeting - 28/11/2016

Page 2




Item No. 7.1.1

Supporting Information

City Planning Committee Meeting - 28/11/2016

Page 5





Application Number

Development Appraisal




1-3 Elizabeth Street (Part of CT. 32426/1)

Description of proposed development:

Temporary Partial Change of Use and Temporary New Building for Museum (Mawson's Hut Replica) and Public Street Furniture




Heritage Area:


Is the property listed?


Planning Officer:

Ben Ikin

Date advertised:


Date required:

16 August 2013



This proposal involves the installation of a temporary structure upon a small block of Council-owned land on the corner of Argyle and Morrison Streets, currently landscaped with turf and gravel.  The temporary structure is a full-sized accurate replica of the structure erected at Cape Denison, Antarctica in 1912 by the expedition led by Douglas Mawson, generally now known as “Mawson’s Huts”.



Source: www.mawsons-huts.org.au


Mawson’s expedition left from Hobart in December 1911, and the wireless station erected upon Mount George, Queen’s Domain was specifically erected by the expedition group as part of the communication system.


The rationale behind the installation of the replica hut building is to engender interest in (and raise funds for) the ongoing conservation of the actual huts in their Antarctic location.  The replica is essentially conceived as a full-sized walk-in model, similar to that which might be found in a museum environment – intended for the instruction and delectation of visitors, thus enabling people to have some sense of the arrangement and interior of the building.  This opportunity is regarded by the proponent as particularly valuable, given the remote location of the original structure, and the very limited access opportunities for members of the general public.


In regard to the battle to fund conservation works, the Mawson's Huts Foundation Chairman, David Jensen, has been quoted as saying, "the whole object of putting this replica in Hobart is to generate revenue for the ongoing conservation and maintenance of the actual huts at Cape Denison …If we get in the region of 60,000 visitors a year, that'll generate around the region of $450 to 480,000 profit." [http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-06-02/tourist-replica-set-to-save-mawson27s-huts/4727992]


The proposed replica structure is intended to be installed for a limited period, with removal by the end of 2014 – essentially a one-off temporary museum exhibition.


The site forms part of the Council-owned block bounded by Davey, Elizabeth, Morrison and Argyle Streets – once known (infamously) as the Civic Square site.  Buildings upon this block were gradually acquired by the Council over a number of years in the 1960s and ‘70s, for the intention of eventual demolition and redevelopment.


Howard’s Hotel, 1952

Source: Here’s Cheers (HCC)

Lloyd’s Hotel (as the building on the subject site was originally known) opened in 1856, with Thomas Howard as the licensee.  It became known as the Howard Hotel about 1900 and the façade was remodelled in the 1930s.  It closed as a hotel in 1962, and was subsequently demolished by the Hobart City Council in 1964 – almost 50 years ago.


Both postcard image below is dated 1910, and shows the original form of the building before remodelling.


Source: Here’s Cheers (HCC)


Since the introduction of the Sullivans Cove Planning Scheme 1997, the area surrounding the subject site has been transformed with a paraphernalia of urban initiatives – light towers, sunshades, artistic ‘way-finding’ signs, murals, simulated tramlines, ice-skating rink and a shipping container converted for use as a takeaway coffee shop.  Most of the recent developments make reference to Mawson’s association with Hobart – his port of departure in 1911.  The installation of a replica of Mawson’s Huts will, during the brief period of its existence, reinforce that theme.


P1110445       P1110448





Celebrating Sir Douglas Mawson in Hobart



The proposal requires assessment against the provisions of Schedule 1 - Conservation of Cultural Heritage Values.  The Introduction and Objectives of this Schedule are quoted in full:


22.1 Introduction

Conservation of the cultural heritage values of Sullivans Cove is the primary objective of the Scheme. Where there is an apparent conflict with other objectives, the conservation of cultural heritage values takes precedence.


This schedule applies to conservation of the cultural heritage values of identified places of cultural significance, including spaces, buildings and objects, and conservation of patterns of continuing or historic use. It also applies to the conservation of archaeologically sensitive sites and the conservation of a recognisable historic character in the areas where authentic historic fabric and spaces remain.


22.2 Objectives

·    To provide the mechanisms to allow the conservation of heritage values.

·    To provide an incentive for ‘building or works’ to be carried out in a manner which is compatible with conservation of cultural heritage values.

·    To ensure that the recognisable historic character of Sullivans Cove is not compromised by new development which overwhelms the places of cultural significance, or, by new development which reduces the apparent authenticity of the historic places by mimicking historic forms.

·    To encourage new development to be recognisable as new, but not individually prominent. Such development must reflect a “good neighbour” relationship to places of identified cultural value.


The scope of clause 22.4 Conservation of Places of Cultural Significance is defined:


22.4.1 Scope

The controls of this clause apply to the carrying out of ‘building or works’ on places of cultural significance identified in Table 1 to this Schedule, and on Figure 5 ‘Places of Cultural Significance’. The status afforded to the places identified shall apply to all of the land within the title boundary, except where this is specifically indicated in Table 1 as not being the case.


The consequence of this provision is that, as the extent of the listing is not further limited in Table 1, the land upon which the proposed building is to be temporarily erected does form part of the title boundary of a listed place, and the proposal is therefore subject to assessment against the provisions of clause 22.4 Conservation of Places of Cultural Significance.



Places of cultural significance which stand next to the vacant land.



Clause 22.4.4 provides for ‘permitted’ building or works:


22.4.4 ‘Permitted’ ‘Building or Works’

‘Building or works’ on places of cultural significance is ‘permitted’ in respect to this

Schedule where it can be demonstrated that the following ‘deemed to comply’ provisions

have been satisfied:


·     The ‘building or works’ are related to the conservation of a place of cultural significance and are to be undertaken in accordance with a Conservation Plan accepted by the Planning Authority as satisfying the submission requirements for an application.


The proposal does not meet this requirement, and must therefore be assessed against the discretionary provisions of clause 22.4.5, which are as follows:


22.4.5 ‘Discretionary’ ‘Building or Works’

‘Building or works’ on places of cultural significance which cannot satisfy the ‘deemed to comply’ provisions of Clause 22.4.4 may be approved at the discretion of the Planning Authority.


The following criteria must be taken into consideration in the assessment of all proposals to undertake ‘building or works’ on places of cultural significance:


·    ‘Building or works’ must complement and contribute to the cultural significance, character and appearance of the place and its setting;

·    ‘Building or works’ must be in compliance with the conservation strategy of an approved Conservation Plan, where required and/or provided;

·    The location, bulk and appearance of ‘building or works’ must not adversely affect the heritage values of any place of cultural significance;

·    ‘Building or works’ must not reduce the apparent authenticity of places of cultural significance by mimicking historic forms;

·    ‘Building or works’ may be recognisable as new but must not be individually prominent;

·    The painting of previously unpainted surfaces is discouraged.


The proposed replica installation does not meet all of these discretionary requirements which must be taken into account.  For example, the proposal does not complement and contribute to the cultural significance, character and appearance of the listed places and their setting – it is clearly a building which does not belong in a temperate urban environment – regardless of its incongruity with the neighbouring heritage buildings.  It is essentially a museum model (albeit full-size) installed for a short period on a conveniently available block of land near the tourist hub of Sullivans Cove.  There is little risk in the apparent authenticity of listed places being reduced by this proposal, as it will clearly be distinguished as a temporary installation with a specific short-term function.  Accordingly, the discretion conferred in this part of the Schedule may be favourably exercised.  If established on a more permanent basis, the construction of the replica huts would have the potential to further demean the historical and cultural authenticity of Sullivans Cove, and the setting and appreciation of the adjacent heritage buildings.




P1110440   P1110436

The richly modelled facades of adjoining buildings (Argyle Street and Morrison Street)


A model of the Mawson's Huts replica to be built on Hobart's waterfront

Model of Mawson’s Huts superimposed on subject site to provide context

Source: http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-06-02/tourist-replica-set-to-save-mawson27s-huts/4727992





The subject site is also included in Table 2 – Places of Archaeological Sensitivity.  The proposal has been accompanied by an Archaeological Sensitivity Report, which has recommended a range of measures to ensure that archaeological values are protected. 



The archaeologist’s report has identified:


·        The need to reasonably protect potential archaeological significance during the design, and carrying out of works, and

·        The need to undertake an archaeological ‘watching brief’ to be required during the carrying out of works.


Subject to the inclusion of appropriate conditions related to archaeology (as identified in the report accompanying the proposal) and related to the non-permanent nature of the installation, the proposal is considered to be of no lasting detriment, and relatively inoffensive in terms of Schedule 1 – Conservation of Places of Cultural Significance of the Sullivans Cove Planning Scheme 1997.


Brendan Lennard-please advise BPL before using.bmp
(Brendan Lennard)

15 August 2013