Repair order for neglected site

Urgent repair orders have been issued for heritage-listed Macedon House in Gisborne.
Heritage Victoria served the notice late last month stating, “owners had allowed the heritage property to fall into disrepair to the extent that its conservation is threatened”.
“The property has been allowed to fall into disrepair while the current owners pursue planning permission to construct a retirement village on the site,” a Heritage Victoria spokesperson said.
“Work has not been undertaken despite ongoing correspondence with Heritage Victoria.”
The owners are now required, within three weeks, to secure the fencing around the site, clean up the site to remove rubbish and overgrown vegetation and secure all external doors and windows to prevent unauthorised
access.
Within three months the owners are also required to install new eaves to gutters and downpipes, re-fix or replace roof sheets, install a new stormwater system, underpin external bluestone walls to prevent collapse, treat the building to eliminate termites, and other urgent repairs.
Failure to comply with a repair order could result in fines of up to $373,104 or imprisonment for five years or both for a natural person, and $746,208 for a body corporate.
Macedon House came to the attention of authorities in 2015 and, since then, communication with the owners has been ongoing about the condition of the building.
Heritage Victoria issued a ‘show cause notice’ February 2, 2018, requiring the owner to show cause why a repair order should not be made.
A Heritage Victoria spokesperson said there had been few repair orders issued in the past 20 years.
The Heritage Act 2017, which began in November, has strengthened enforcement and compliance provisions to protect state-listed heritage places including increasing maximum penalties for unauthorised works to deter damage to heritage places and objects, and a range of other measures.

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