Old council mural damaged

Old Brimbank council building mural. Photo taken 24/02/2022. (Max Hatzoglou)

Max Hatzoglou

The old Brimbank Council officers built in the 1960’s that was sold for over five million dollars in 2018 has had its historic mural damaged.

Pictures show a hole has been put through the mural, a glass mosaic, which is a heritage protected artwork piece on the building.

The mural, built by a local artist, is located at the front of the building and has a heritage overlay which requires preservation by the owners.

City Development director Kelvin Walsh says the heritage overlay does not require maintenance.

“A Heritage Overlay applies to this privately owned site to ensure the protection of heritage as part of any future development,” Mr Walsh said.

“Unfortunately, the Heritage Overlay does not require the maintenance of heritage structures and there are no penalties that apply for allowing a heritage structure to fall into disrepair.

“However, the redevelopment of the site requires a planning permit and conditions can be included on the planning permit to repair parts of the building that are damaged or vandalised. All conditions on the permit can be enforced by Council.

“Our expectation is that any development proposal would include the retention and restoration of the window.”

Councillor Bruce Lancashire said the council made a submission into protecting heritage buildings in Brimbank and hoped that the rules were enforced.

“The governments introduced planning legislation relating to heritage buildings that don’t get looked after and allowed to deteriorate or be demolished illegally.

“And there are some concerns raised about while they have introduced that legislation it doesn’t seem to take effect.

The owner of the property is a developer who has previously done a number of commercial and residential developments in the Sunshine area.

The building exceeded expectations when it was sold, going for $5.581 million, well above the appraised $2.3-$2.5 million prior to the auction.

The building sadly seems to have had vandalism occur to it as graffiti and broken windows can be seen from the outside despite the property being fenced off.

Over the years the mural has lost its colour, particularly since it was taken over by new owners.