Toowoomba Open House 2017 Phot0 Report
University of Queensland Rural Clinical School
From Little Things Big Things Grow …
Toowoomba Open House returns again in 2017 with over 19 of Toowoombaâ€™s favourite historic and new architectural masterpieces open for public viewing, for free, on Sunday 28 May at various times between 10am and 4pm. The little things often generate the most interest and this is the case with Toowoomba Open House.
Three of the littlest buildings in the Open House catalogue this year are creating significant interest.
The Menâ€™s Urinal on Russell Street is tiny but its story is enormous, for it tells of a time when public sanitation was a life and death issue. Imagine living in a city where Typhoid (directly related to contaminated ground water caused by sewage) was a fact of life, resulting in scores of deaths, particularly among children.
The Urinal reminds us of this time for its construction in 1919, was undertaken in the midst of a Typhoid epidemic and marked a concerted campaign by one of Toowoombaâ€™s greatest Mayors, Dr T.A Price, to create a safer living and working environment for the residents.
The Air Raid Shelter, some 150 metres away, is small and unassuming yet it reminds us all of a time of fear and uncertainty. A time when Toowoomba was literally on the front line of efforts to defeat the Japanese in World War 2. It serves as a tangible reminder of the only time Australia has come under attack.
A time when troop, equipment and other war related trains passed through the city all day, every day. A time when â€˜the warâ€™ was front and centre in every oneâ€™s lives.
Augustaâ€™s Cottage in the Mort Street Estate is miniscule by comparison to some of Toowoombaâ€™s modern day houses, but it is one of Toowoombaâ€™s most significant buildings, because its layout and form are typical of Toowoombaâ€™s earliest houses. Constructed in Toowoombaâ€™s first residential estate, the Mort Estate, the house is well over 150 years old, probably constructed around the time of the American Civil War and when the colony of Queensland was in its infancy. As such its history parallels, not only Toowoombaâ€™s development but also Queenslandâ€™s.
Each of these â€˜smallâ€™ buildings tell stories of tremendous significance.. Other highlights of this yearâ€™s event are several outstanding modern buildings that are set to become the heritage buildings of our future city, including the Toowoomba Flexi School on Chalk Drive, Brisbane West Wellcamp Airport, Toowoomba City Library and the University of Queensland Rural Clinical School.
Visit www.toowoombaopenhouse.com.au for more details.