What is significant?
A 12.8 acre site, part of the Newbury Estate, off Raglan Street in Preston was purchased by the Housing Commission of Victoria around July 1938. The layout of the estate used parts of the existing Montague, Hurlstone and Cowper Streets and created the new Ascot Street and Railton Grove (which appears to have been called Montague Street on the estate plan). to enter the estate from Raglan and Newcastle Streets. By mid 1940, 38 of the proposed 96 brick dwelling units, including 28 single bedroom units, had been constructed.
The following elements contribute to the significanceof this place:
- The houses and flats constructed by the Housing Commission of Victoriato the extent of the 1940 fabric at 7 & 2-30 Ascot Street, 1-3 & 6-8 Cowper Street, 2-18 Montague Street, 7-27 Newcastle Street, 181-189 Raglan Street, 1-29 and 2-30 Railton Grove. The housing is a mix of single storey brick duplexes with concrete or rendered bases and gable roofs with corbelled gable ends, and two storey flats with transverse gable roofs and symmetrically composed facades with chimneys placed at the centre.
- The low front and side fences
How is it significant?
The HCV Raglan Street Estate is of local historic, architectural and aesthetic significance to Darebin City.
Why is it significant?
Historically, the HCV Raglan Street Estate is significant for its associations with the Housing Commission of Victoria and as one of the first public housing estates developed in Victoria. It provides evidence of the first generation of estates to be developed by the Housing Commission of Victoria to house residents displaced by the 'slum clearance' activities of the HCV in the inner suburbs of Melbourne during the inter-war period. It is one of a small number of estates to be commenced prior to 1940 when World War II led to a cessation of building activity by the HCV until the mid-1940s. It provides evidence of the importance of Darebin as an area where almost half of the first Commission estates were constructed in the period before 1940. The estate is notable for the inclusion of single person flats, one of the earliest examples of this type of multi-dwelling development by the Commission (AHC criteria A.4, D.2, H.1)
The HCV Raglan Street Estate is of architectural significance as a representative example of an early Housing Commission of Victoria housing estate. The houses and flats demonstrate the early development of the design philosophy of the HCV. (AHC criterion D.2)
The HCV Raglan Street Estate is aesthetically significant as an example of Garden City planning. The consistent form and siting of the houses with front garden setbacks and low front and side fences allows the entire streetscape to be seen as a single entity. The two storey flats are an important and rare element and the placement of the two-storey building at the western end of Railton Grove to terminate the vista is an early example of technique used by the Commission in a number of Estates to create visual interest. (AHC criterion E.1)