You might know the dilapidated shopping centre on the corner of Cleveland and Baptist Streets as “murder mall”, a name which locals have used either to demean the state of the building or the people who shop there (if you’re doing the latter, stop it now).
It’s true that the Surry Hills Shopping Village – home to Chicks Ahoy and Blooms the Chemist – has seen better days. The building was once the site of the Bank of NSW and the original brickwork from 1867 is still used as the shopping centre’s facade, but the centre as we know it was earmarked for redevelopment by the City of Sydney in 2008, and now we’re getting a glimpse at its next phase – a new mixed-use development for retail, dining and living that’s set to be complete by early 2022.
The new Surry Hills Village will be doing all it can to shake off its alleged dank reputation. The plans include a double-storey retail precinct, a 517 sqm public park, a marketplace-style laneway with a mix of providores and restaurants, as well as a revamped Coles supermarket. But the biggest difference will be the 157 luxury apartments.
Australian property group TOGA acquired the site in 2015, and this week they’ve lodged the development application for the site, with a planned construction period from 2019-2022. They’ve also just appointed local architects SJB + Studio Prineas to work on the building’s concept, which promises to protect and revive the original building frontage and to create a space that locals can be proud of.
TOGA’s managing director Allan Vidor said they’re thrilled that the appointed team is “made up of local Surry Hills residents, with an exceptional passion and knowledge for the neighbourhood.” Adam Haddow, director at SJB, says the designs for the new apartments are mirrored on his own Cleveland Street residence, adding, “It is set to become a fantastic destination for locals.”
Unfortunately for current residents of the area, Surry Hills Shopping Village will be closed during construction – however, TOGA are offering a community bus service between the Surry Hills Shopping Village and Danks Street Plaza in Waterloo to help you get to Coles.
Even if you’re not a Surry Hills or Redfern resident, many people hold a special place in their hearts for “murder mall”. We’ll be adding it to the affectionate list of things we miss in Sydney once construction gets underway next year.