UPDATE December 1, 2020: Despite Boroondara councillors unanimously agreeing to protect this home, Minister for Planning Minister Richard Wynne has refused the request for an interim heritage overlay while council implements its protection process. Without an interim overlay, the house remains vulnerable. To express your concerns, write to or phone the office Richard Wynne (firstname.lastname@example.org) to request an interim protection order be granted.
A petition has been created to protect a Melbourne house designed by Australia’s most influential architect Robin Boyd from likely demolition. The home is currently on the market and being promoted as a subdivided block with development potential, with no images of the house, or historic information included in the listing. Basically, if you were to have a look at the current listing, you would have no idea of its important architectural history – you can see the home in a previous listing from 2018.
Located at 12-14 Tannock Street, Balwyn North, Boyd designed this house in 1949, with alterations by the architect in 1959, and again in 1971.
Research by Built Heritage prepared for the City of Boroondara notes this house as being an early and intact example of Boyd’s work. The house was one of the first projects Boyd undertook after opening his own solo practice, and is among relatively few surviving examples from this seminal period. Despite this knowledge, the property is not heritage protected. So, want to do something about it?
The petition started by Jacqui Alexander, director at Alexander Sheridan Architecture and senior lecturer at Monash Architecture, is encouraging the City of Boroondara council to officially recognise this home and protect it from potential demolition. The petition also hopes to raise awareness of this house’s existence, in the hopes of attracting a buyer who sees its architectural value.
Jacqui describes the house as ‘an important example of mid-century modernism in Melbourne, and in spite of material shortages at the time it was built, the design is innovative and ambitious.’ The house incorporates ideas that would come to revolutionise Australian domestic design, including open-plan living, and split-levels as a means to define rooms. ‘It is an important legacy from the period, promoting a new, optimistic image of the suburbs of Melbourne, and the promise of good, affordable and dignified design for the common Australian,’ Jacqui says.
Head here to sign the petition to save this Robin Boyd designed home!