News

The 'ugliest building in Ipswich' gets a facelift

THE UGLY duckling of central Ipswich, the old courthouse building, is about to undergo a multi-million dollar refurbishment, transforming it into a modern retail and commercial hub.

Axis Capital snapped up the massive 4500sq m federal government site late last year for $3.3 million and has been working on a concept plan for a major facelift before looking at leasing interest.

Company director Robert Bitomsky said plans to reinvent the outer facade of the building included new glass entry, feature lighting, a new colour scheme and a rendered finish to the exterior.

Mr Bitomsky said it was also planned to open the South St end of the building to the park to create a cafe and restaurant area.

He said the project - dubbed 59 East - would be a multi-million dollar investment in the site, with services upgrades alone set to cost $3 million.

Constructed in 1981 as a purpose built court house, the building is currently filled with small rooms, holding cells, court rooms and narrow corridors.

However, Mr Bitomsky said the building was "surprisingly adaptable" as most of the internal walls were not load-bearing walls which allowed space to be opened up.

Preliminary building works have been carried out over the past two weeks with the ground floor already gutted to allow more natural light and open up 2500sq m floor plates.

The exterior has also been pressure cleaned.

Mr Bitomsky said the building would be suitable for a variety of potential uses such as a day hospital, specialist medical clinic, retail, office, entertainment, education or a sports club.

He said his company had been in talks with a couple of prospective tenants and would be calling for expressions of interest next week, to close on June 30.

Artist's impression of '59 East', a development planned for the old courthouse building on the corner of Limestone and East Street. Photo: Contributed
Artist's impression of '59 East', a development planned for the old courthouse building on the corner of Limestone and East Street. Photo: Contributed Contributed

Under the new plans, car parking for the building will be quadrupled to 80 car bays.

Mayor Paul Pisasale said Axis Capital had shown confidence in the city with their investment and the site was another piece in the city master plan.

"Axis Capital has taken on a huge responsibility," he said.

"This is the gateway into the city and they are going to turn the ugliest-looking building into the nicest-looking building."

In their planning report, prominent architects Arkhefield said the building's transformation would provide "a facelift" to Limestone St.

Axis Capital has previously carried out residential subdivision work at Leichhardt but the courthouse is the group's first fixed asset in Ipswich.

Mr Bitomsky said he believed there were numerous development opportunities in Ipswich as a result of the city's population growth.

The building is located on the corner of Limestone and East St.

"The proximity of this asset to the CBD to the civic area and to the health precinct makes it an attractive site," Mr Bitomsky said.

"We've called it the heart of Ipswich because it is in the centre of the action."

 

BUILDING FACELIFT: Ipswich Mayor Paul Pisasale with 59 East project director Andreja Brkan and director Robert Bitomsky in front of the old courthouse building where the development will be undertaken.
BUILDING FACELIFT: Ipswich Mayor Paul Pisasale with 59 East project director Andreja Brkan and director Robert Bitomsky in front of the old courthouse building where the development will be undertaken. Rob Williams

Topics:  old courthouse refurbishment



Police release image, video of 2016 hit and run

The vehicle involved could be a 1988-1997 model Toyota Hilux.

The vehicle involved could be a 1988-1997 model Toyota

Council refusal of 'high density' development ends in court

Ipswich City Council first meeting with the new 2016 council.

Developer took the matter to the Queensland Planning Court

Twiggy puts money where mouth is

Fortescue Metals Group CEO and philanthropist Andrew 'Twiggy' Forrest, Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and actor Russell Crowe at an event unveiling one of Australia's largest philanthropic donations to fund a variety of social and scientific causes at Parliament House in Canberra, Monday, May 22, 2017. (AAP Image/Mick Tsikas) NO ARCHIVING

has taken a leaf out of Bill Gates' book

Local Partners

Rebel Wilson says she didn’t have to lie to make it

I’M not glamorous, but that doesn’t make me a liar: that’s the message from Rebel Wilson on her second day in the witness box.

All bets on Judah to win battle to become the Voice

Judah Kelly from The Voice.

Judah Kelly is the clear favourite to win the competition.

Kim Kardashian slammed over Manchester tribute

Kim Kardashian's tribute to Manchester didn't go down well

National breakfast show to film live in Ipswich

Studio 10 roving reporter David Robinson.

Roving Robbo homeward bound as Studio 10 comes to town

Top Gun 2 movie is happening, Tom Cruise confirms

Tom Cruise in a scene from the movie Top Gun.

TOM Cruise delights fans with announcement on Sunrise.

The first Baywatch movie reviews are in

From left, Jon Bass, Alex Daddario, Zac Efron, Dwayne Johnson, Kelly Rohrbach, and Ilfenesh Hadera in a scene from the movie Baywatch.

Critics were less than impressed.

Boyfriend loses it over sex lie

Stacey Louise’s sex lie destroys her relationship.

SEVEN Year Switch’s Stacey told a fib about her sex life.

Council refusal of 'high density' development ends in court

Ipswich City Council first meeting with the new 2016 council.

Developer took the matter to the Queensland Planning Court

How Toowoomba house prices compare in Australia

For sale sign in front of home.

Here's what $700,000 will buy you in Toowoomba, Brisbane and Sydney

One of Maryborough's most historic homes is still for sale

FULL OF HISTORY: Trisha Moulds is owner of the historic Tinana state known as Rosehill. The beautiful home is currently for sale.

It has been the scene of both joy and tragedies over the years.

The face of the Sunshine Coast's overpriced rental crisis

Alyx Wilson had to rent a $385 unit in Currimundi because the market was too competitive for cheaper rental housing. She is now renting a room from friends who own a house in Currimundi, and says its much more affordable.

Young people feel the strain in competitive, expensive rental market

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!