Clarence City Council is proud to announce the 50th anniversary of its iconic chambers ahead of a new evolution for the award-winning building.

The building was opened on 16 April 1973 by Eric Reece M.H.A., Premier of Tasmania, and represents a significant milestone in the municipality’s history and growth.

The founding partners of Tasmanian Architects Bush Parks Shugg & Moon, along with young architects Ray Heffernan, Bevan Rees, and Charlie Voss, came together to deliver this forward-looking project.

Mayor Brendan Blomeley said the outstanding design of the Clarence City Chambers, which utilised local materials, space, and landform, created a strong civic identity for the expanding community at that time.

“The building has received multiple awards over the past 50 years, including the Australian Institute of Architects (AIA) – Triennial Award for Public, Educational, Religions and Sporting Buildings in 1975 by the Tasmanian chapter, and most recently the prestigious AIA Enduring Architecture Award in 2022 again by the Tasmanian chapters,” Mayor Blomeley said.

“It was also nominated for a National Architecture Award in the Enduring Architecture category in 2022.”

In the late 1960’s the then-Clarence Commission made the decision to relocate the municipal government offices from the original site, on the corner of Percy Street and Cambridge Road in Bellerive Village to Rosny Park, to the new location next to the then-new Rosny Regional Shopping Centre – now known as Eastlands.

As the Clarence Municipality once again continues to experience significant growth, it is an opportune time for the council to undertake the expansion and modernisation of the chambers for the next 50 years.

“Our City Heart Project encompasses this important civic site and we are currently out for consultation for concepts for the entire city centre including this critical community building,” Mayor Blomeley said.

Local Tasmanian firm 1+2 Architecture has been engaged to ensure the chambers can better meet the requirements of modern needs and operations of council plus allow more accessible spaces for the community and visitors to utilise the facility.

Fred Ward, a director at 1+2 Architecture, said renovating a significant building sensitively is a multifaceted process that requires a thoughtful and nuanced approach.

“It involves balancing the preservation of the building’s history and original design with the need to create modern, functional spaces that are relevant to contemporary work environments and public places,” Mr Ward said.

“Being selected for this project and having our names added to the list of respected Tasmanian architects who have contributed to this highly regarded building is a genuine honour.”

The 50th anniversary of this iconic building is a very special occasion for the council and the community, celebrating its rich history and now looking forward to its expansion and continued contribution to the municipality.

The City Heart consultation on concepts is open until 7 May 2023 and can be accessed via Council’s Your Say platform.