Cairns Court House refurbishment

Background

The regionally significant Court House building is situated on Abbott Street, a prime location of the Cairns CBD. Constructed between 1919 and 1921, it was the home of law and order in Cairns until 1992 when a new Court House and Police Station precinct was developed along Sheridan Street. The former Cairns Court House was then renovated thereafter as a restaurant and bar, known as the "Cairns Court House Hotel".

In 2016, Cairns Regional Council acquired the Cairns Court House Hotel with the intention of refurbishing the building to its original condition. The building is registered on the Queensland Heritage Register and is therefore protected under the provisions of the Queensland Heritage Act 1992. The building is also registered on Cairns Regional Council’s local heritage list.

The Court House building is a key component of Council’s proposed Cairns Gallery Precinct, which would see two additional heritage-listed buildings, the Cairns Art Gallery and the former Mulgrave Shire Council building at 51 The Esplanade, transformed to create a dynamic and world class gallery precinct.

The Refurbishment Project

The primary aim of the $4.9 million Court House Refurbishment project is to expand the potential of the building as an event and gallery space for the Cairns Gallery Precinct, while ensuring that heritage values of the building are maintained for future generations. The project involves the following building works:

  • roofing and structural upgrades,
  • door, window and flooring improvements,
  • electrical, lighting and mechanical services upgrades,
  • amenities and hydraulic services upgrades
  • internal and external painting, and
  • construction of ramps for DDA compliance.

Construction works are expected to start in October 2019, with completion expected in December 2020, weather permitting. An early works component involving asbestos removal and non-heritage building demolition items was completed in April 2019.

For further information concerning the above works, please contact Council on 4044 3303 or email feedback@cairns.qld.gov.au.

This project has been jointly funded by Cairns Regional Council and the Federal Government through the Regional Jobs and Investment Packages Grant.
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Last updated: 16 August 2019