06/02/2008 - 22:00

ABC site sparks heritage tussle

06/02/2008 - 22:00

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The former ABC studios on Adelaide Terrace have become the focus of a tussle between aspirant tenant, the WA Symphony Orchestra, and the ABC.

ABC site sparks heritage tussle

The former ABC studios on Adelaide Terrace have become the focus of a tussle between aspirant tenant, the WA Symphony Orchestra, and the ABC.

The Heritage Council of WA announced in December that it was placing the 1.3-hectare site on the state’s interim heritage register – a move supported by the City of Perth at last week’s council meeting.

However, the National Trust of WA and WASO have made a bid for the site to be listed on the national heritage register, to allow the orchestra to move back into its purpose-built facilities. 

The move has received the support of Culture and the Arts Minister Sheila McHale, who has written to the federal government requesting that it consider the proposal to re-house WASO.

In her letter, Ms McHale said the government would consider providing $8 million towards an upgrade for the building, funding originally allocated for the purpose in 2001.

However, the ABC intends to sell the site, which is located on prime commercial land.

WASO chief executive officer Keith Venning said  he had received indications before Christmas from the ABC’s chief operating officer that the site would be sold no later than March this year.

National Trust of WA chief executive Tom Perrigo said the organisation had been prepared to bid for the site if the ABC put it up for sale, although he hoped the federal government would enact the heritage listing.

“We have commenced some high-level discussions with the new Commonwealth government and we’re awaiting a rethink and decision,” Mr Perrigo said.

“The ABC can no longer ignore their heritage obligations under Commonwealth or state legislation.”

The ABC site is expected to remain on the WA interim heritage register for 12 months, after which it would be transferred to the permanent register according to normal procedure.

STANDING BY BUSINESS. TRUSTED BY BUSINESS.

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