Anger at move to demolish Rex Theatre
Application: The owners of the Rex Theatre on Sheridan St have applied to demolish the building.
OWNERS of the Rex Theatre in Sheridan St have applied to demolish the building - a move which has infuriated traditionalists who see it as another blow to "Old Cairns".
Yesterday, Cairns Regional Council confirmed it had received a demolition application from owners, Eldav Pty Ltd. The demolition application comes after large parts of the timber building were dismantled without the council’s permission.
Last month, the council ordered the owners and contractors to stop all demolition work.
Cairns Historical Society secretary Dawn May said many people would be horrified by the application. "I think sections of the community will be outraged," Dr May said.
The council had demanded a please explain from the owners over the unauthorised work with a deadline set for October 7. Yesterday, a council spokeswoman said it had received an application to demolish the building."The application has been lodged with the council and it could be a couple of weeks before they get through the various aspects of the application," the spokeswoman said.
The council’s general manager of planning and environment Peter Tabulo said the demolition application was being reviewed and processed. Councillors would then vote on the application. It is possible the owners could face prosecution and fines for the unauthorised demolition of the heritage-listed building.
Dr May said she was very disappointed with the application. "I don’t know what they can do given the state it is in," she said. "It is disappointing that another piece of ‘Old Cairns’ looks as if it is going to be lost." Efforts to contact the owners’ agent were unsuccessful.
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What an indictment this article and photo is on the operations of the Cairns Regional Council including Councillors and staff.
The way irresponsible owners/developers can treat this Council with contempt is a disturbing state of affairs. The issue here is not whether the building deserves to be retained as an icon of Cairns in days gone by, but the fact that Council is treated with a lack of respect. The standard for this lack of respect is spawned from the lack of respect Councillors themselves have for each other. The disrespect is systemic and terminal and needs to be rectified at the election on March 31st 2012.
Demolishing activity was taken place on the site for weeks prior to the Council belatedly getting its act together. Sheridan Street is a major thorough fare traversed by Councillors and staff every day including both the Mayor Val Schier and her 'loyal' Deputy Cr Cochrane and yet it took the building to get to this state before they became active. This is not good enough Councillors!
The Council must say NO to the application for demolition and indeed insist that it be restored to it original state before the unlawful demolishing activity took place.
This issue has inherrant reasons why it should become a yard stick in the philosophical outlookand and direction of this current dysfunctional Cairns Regional Council.
The resident must demand better representation!
19th october 2011