Evolving Port

Port Melbourne continues to change. Houses are changed or demolished and new houses take their place. New forms of housing are created. Port Houses records some of these changes.

Friday, January 29, 2016

The story of 154 Farrell St, Port Melbourne

When a new house becomes a home, the starkness softens.



24 January 2011
Why 154 Farrell St has steps up to the front door

154 Farrell St in July 2005 - image David Thompson


In summary:

The Council supported a two level replacement building for 154 Farrell St. It was then referred to Melbourne Water which required an additional 1.2 m in height due to a predicted increase in flood levels. This makes the dwelling seem uncomfortably high in the street.

In more detail:

Port Phillip Council policy requires respect for the scale and form of neighbouring heritage places, but does not prohibit two storey buildings next to single storey buildings. The step of an additonal level from one to two is considered reasonable.
154 Farrell St is located in a Special Building Overlay [SBO] in the Port Phillip Planning Scheme. The SBO refers to areas that are: 'liable to inundation by overland flows from the urban drainage system as determined by, or in consultation with, the floodplain management authority' [extract from the Special Building Overlay 44.05] 
Planning applications in a SBO must be referred* to the floodplain manager - in our case Melbourne Water. Melbourne Water required that the ground level of the building be increased in height by an additional 1.2 m.
This has led to the dwelling looking considerably higher than it would have been as just a two storey building.
*A responsible authority [the Council in this case] 'must give a copy of an application to every person or body that the planning scheme specifies as a referral authority for applications of that kind without delay' 
[cl 55, Planning and Environment Act]

History of Farrell Street

The precinct within which 154 Farrell St lies has been examined and recorded in great detail by researchers Margaret and Graham Bride and David Thompson. The precinct is bounded by Evans/Farrell/Williamstown/Bridge St. The award winning cd History of a Street Precinct can be obtained from the Port Melbourne Historical and Preservation Society through inquiry at the Assist desk at Port Melbourne Town Hall/Library.

Here is a snippet of the history of 154 Farrell Street

The owner of the house in 1895 was Francis Arthur Hildebrand, born in Prussia in 1833. He married Matilda Potbury whose father was a fisherman in Port Melbourne at that time. They had eight children. He operated the general store, now a brick house, on the north eastern corner of Farrell/Derham St. He later became a civil servant.

Information and photo courtesy of History of a Street Precinct, Port Melbourne Historical and Preservation Society.


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