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YMCA mount fresh bid to tear down C-listed Perth church

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January 25 2018

YMCA mount fresh bid to tear down C-listed Perth church
The YMCA has resurrected plans to demolish the 130-year old St Andrew’s and St Stephen’s Church on Atholl Street, together with an adjoining tenement on North William Street, to build a ground floor assembly building with 21 flats above.

Architects Fouin & Bell have been instructed to oversee the plans, which will see the existing YMCA building demolished after its condition deteriorated to the point where it was no longer safe to use nor financially viable to repair.

Despite sitting within the city’s central conservation area the proposal is to demolish both in order to grant the YMCA the space it requires to continue its charitable work while also providing new affordable homes for Caledonia Housing Association.

Outlining their site proposals the architects wrote: “The proposed finishes are sympathetic to the surroundings and consist of ground floor natural stone, including the retention of the existing Church Entrance and buttresses, first floor level render finish to Atholl Street. On North William street, partial ground floor stone to end gable and then two colours of render finish elsewhere. There are feature stone stringer, cill and lintol details. The proposed roof finish is slate and the stone gabled fronts will have stone skews.”

The gothic church currently resides on the Buildings at Risk Register while the neighbouring tenement, also C-listed, has suffered structural failure with the external wall bowing onto the street.

The plans mark culmination of 20-years of deterioration which were allowed to carry on unchecked owing to legal wrangles and an absence of funding.
Elements of the front facade will be retained and reused in a concession to heritage
Elements of the front facade will be retained and reused in a concession to heritage

11 Comments

StyleCouncil
#1 Posted by StyleCouncil on 25 Jan 2018 at 12:21 PM
This is beyond belief.
CM
#2 Posted by CM on 25 Jan 2018 at 12:55 PM
The buildings to the side and rear of the church are derelict and of no architectural value. I think the proposals are relatively good considering most proposals for flatted developments and should bring some life to a dead and pretty down and out street in Perth. It would be shame to lose the church building, but it's hard to get worked up about it when it's a church design that can be seen anywhere.
European Norm
#3 Posted by European Norm on 25 Jan 2018 at 14:45 PM
it would be a shame to lose this church, what looks like an original Georgian tenement and an interesting building which unites the two, only to replace it with this tired pastiche, a scheme which seems to come with it's own apology
Neil C
#4 Posted by Neil C on 25 Jan 2018 at 15:43 PM
"The plans mark culmination of 20-years of deterioration."

In other words:

"Yeah, we totally cocked up letting a C-listed tenement and a Gothic church disintegrate. Our bad. Still, we're going to throw up some generic HA tripe in its place, and we'll put a Gothic arch on the front door, so it's almost the same, isn't it?"

Shame on everyone involved in allowing this to happen - including the council, if they approve these proposals. The tenement might be lost, but surely the church can be saved if structural repairs are conducted quickly?
jimbob tanktop
#5 Posted by jimbob tanktop on 25 Jan 2018 at 20:05 PM
Young men, there's no need to tear down
I said, young men, don't rebuild from the ground
I said, young men, 'cause you're in a wee town
There's no need to be pure vandals

Young men, Perth will reap what you sow
I said, young men, though you're short on your dough
You can re-store, and I'm sure you will find
Many ways to make a good place

It's fun to wreck say the YMCA
It's fun to wreck say the YMCA
Passerby
#6 Posted by Passerby on 26 Jan 2018 at 08:34 AM
#5 nice jt - a song from 1979. about the same time this eyesore was last in use.
boaby wan
#7 Posted by boaby wan on 26 Jan 2018 at 10:15 AM
"Architects Fouin & Bell have been instructed to oversee the plans" - does that mean they aren't responsible for the "design"?
Beetlejuice
#8 Posted by Beetlejuice on 26 Jan 2018 at 12:56 PM
#5 Bravo! Reading that comment is the best thing that's happened all week!
Sven
#9 Posted by Sven on 26 Jan 2018 at 13:04 PM
Some harsh comments. The proposed design is in keeping with the history of the old buildings but modernizes it at the same time. This is good and can only be lauded.
Trombe Wall
#10 Posted by Trombe Wall on 26 Jan 2018 at 13:29 PM
Was it the cowboy, native american, policeman or builder who lazily 'designed' this?
Terra
#11 Posted by Terra on 3 Feb 2018 at 20:26 PM
Good grief; unbelievable. Also lol #5

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