A $1.5 MILLION redevelopment of the former Paterson Street site of The Examiner has begun under the watch of Artas Architects.
The Launceston City Council approved the development application for the historic building, which will include a redesign of the site’s main entrance and the addition of a lift to service its three floors.
Seven potential tenancy spaces have been advertised, under owners EXA Group, and development is expected to be completed by January next year.
Artas director Scott Curran said they would also take up tenancy at the front of the ground floor by Christmas.
‘‘The facade is not going to change at all, all the heritage people said they value not only the original building, but they’re now saying they value the extension that was done onto the site,’’ Mr Curran said.
‘‘It’s a beautiful building, it occupies a really central space in Launceston.
‘‘There’s fantastic car parking and a lot of extra land. The building also has a great history – it’s a win-win.’’
Mr Curran said there was also an intention to develop the car parking space on the corner of Paterson and Charles streets into a retail area.
‘‘A group of local businessmen were prepared to put their money where their mouth is with the redevelopment – it’s showing a lot of confidence in the town,’’ he said.
Significant interest has been shown in the site, Mr Curran said, although Artas was the only confirmed tenant so far.
He said successful renewal of the city’s heritage sites for modern uses was an integral part of maximising Launceston’s development potential.
‘‘I think buildings need to be able to be reused, otherwise they sit and rot,’’ he said.
‘‘The key is finding a good use, that gives them the opportunity to be redeveloped in order to be saved.’’