Balwyn Road Residential Heritage Study Review 2006
Statement of Significance
Significance of Individual Property
This site is significant as being the first substantial home in the precinct and thus setting a pattern of development that has continued through to the late twentieth century of architect designed houses. Shrublands was one of the four substantial holdings that were subdivided from the mid-1880s.
Shrublands is architecturally significant as a fine example of an 1860s asymmetric Italianate mansion with restrained classical detailing. The building's form of a return verandah and balcony with bay window becomes common around the 1880s in both larger houses and cottages.
The Balwyn Road Residential Precinct is of historic significance because the pattern of development reflects that of Boroondara generally. In much of Boroondara one or two periods might be represented in any one precinct, however in the Balwyn Road Residential Precinct all periods are nearly equally represented. As such, the precinct is a microcosm of the broad sweep of development across the City. The relative consistency in the allotment width and/or size across the different phases of development serves to unify the precinct.
There are historical associations with several eminent families (Danks, Goldings, Marfleets, McAlpins, etc). Of further interest is the profile that some residents have had at a broader level (either State, national or international) and the manifold connections between various residents within the precinct and the City of Boroondara.
The Balwyn Road Residential Precinct is of aesthetic significance for the many high quality buildings, some of which are of individual significance at the broader level, and others that are generally good examples of their architectural style. The buildings are remarkably intact to their period of construction and have been well maintained. There has been limited change of building stock. A high proportion of the buildings have been architect designed. Although there are a range of styles evident, there is a consistency in scale and setbacks.
The extensive and well maintained landscaping both to the street (with trees and wide reservations) and the private gardens provides a level of cohesion. One of the gardens (no. 17) is a rare example of a late nineteenth century intact suburban garden. In addition, some of the early road and paving infrastructure is intact.