Green light for the Boot Factory DA

26 May 2020

The heritage-listed Boot Factory at Bondi Junction is set to be transformed after the Sydney Eastern City Planning Panel approved Waverley Council’s development application (DA) for the Mill Hill site, Mayor of Waverley, Paula Masselos, today announced.

The approval of the DA paves the way for the Council to transform the former shoemaking factory at the rear of Norman Lee Place at 27-33 Spring Street into an innovative community space connected to the Mill Hill Community Centre, Mayor Masselos said.

“The Boot Factory restoration is one of the Council’s key projects for 2020 and aligns with the commitment I made to the residents of Waverley when I was elected to ensure that our Council continues to restore and retain our heritage buildings for innovative future uses for the community," Mayor Masselos said.

“The DA approval comes just days after the Council also took further steps towards appointing a head contractor for the Bondi Pavilion Restoration and Conservation Project at its meeting on Tuesday, so it’s been a significant week for the protection of heritage in Waverley.”

The Boot Factory was built in 1892 by William Sidaway and Son and was last restored by Council in 1986. It has been vacant since 2007, and in 2013, Council undertook significant remedial structural works to ensure the stability of the building until an alternative use could be found.

The DA is for restoration works to the roof, masonry perimeter walls, new floors and an interior fit-out. The building will also be connected to the Mill Hill Community Centre to provide lift access and amenities for Boot Factory users. Council will also beautify the courtyard at Norman Lee Place.

“Our intention is to return the Boot Factory to a community and Council building that will include a knowledge and innovation hub where we can nurture ideas to further transform Waverley into a ‘smart city’ of the future.

“We are now one step closer to fulfilling this vision for the Boot Factory, which over the years, has served as a base for community services and organisations including the Inventors Association of Australia. For it to be transformed into a hub for innovation once more is exciting.

“The Boot Factory and Bondi Pavilion are such important buildings in the history of Waverley and our restoration of both will ensure they are preserved for future generations,” Mayor Masselos said.

Council will now commence steps in appointing a lead contractor for the project with construction expected to begin mid-next year. Building and landscaping works are expected to be completed by around October 2021.

Council will consider business case work on the Knowledge and Innovation Hub concept in June before making decisions on whether and how to advance the exciting proposal.

Construction work on the Bondi Pavilion project will commence mid-next month and take around 18 months to complete.

Works on the Bondi Junction Cycleway and Streetscape Project in Spring St, Bondi Junction, will be completed well before construction begins on the Boot Factory restoration.

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