Former Records Office: 287-295 Queen Street, MELBOURNE
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Building ProfileName : Former Records Office
LocationAddress: 287-295 Queen Street
Former Records Office is a landmark
Construction DetailsBuilt: 1900 - 1904
Original use: Public (Government)
Current use: Education
number of floors : 4
Built in the Victorian period in the Second Empire style
The former Records Office is architecturally significant as the last grand statement in the Victorian Second Empire style of a city aspiring to the grandeur of European cities. The Records Office marks the end of the imposing classical style for public buildings in Melbourne and reflects an important development in the design philosophy of Public Works Department architects.
The former Records Office was built in 1900-1904 to the design of S E Bindley, District Architect of the Public Works Department. The contractor was Bartley Dinsmore. It was originally built to house official records including records of births, deaths and marriages, as well as legal records and wills. The building is in the Victorian Second Empire style, a style considered appropriate for a city striving for Parisian grandeur. The main building has a rusticated basement and first floor, a piano nobile with Corinthian columns and pilasters, and an attic storey hidden behind the balustraded parapet. The distinctive Mansard roof is capped with cast iron finials and elaborate zinc griffins. Typical of the style, the main facade has projecting centre and end bays. Internally the main staircase at the Queen Street entrance rises on granite columns through three floors and has marble balustrades to the first floor and cast iron balustrades to the piano nobile. The former Records Office is constructed of stuccoed brick and is joined to a single-storey strong room building at the rear by a courtyard. A caretakers flat was built over the strong room building in 1938. Fireproof floor construction is used throughout the building, and iron roller shutters on the ground floor and in the strong room.Architect: S.E Brindley
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