Tower (210 Lonsdale Street) only structure still extant.
The remaining structures of what was built as the Melbourne Hospital are of State significance as evidence of the largest and most complex hospital built in Victoria before World War 1, and one of the most innovative examples of the Edwardian free Style in the state.
The pavilion principle, combined with multi-storey planning to this extent was unique in Australia, and resulted in a substantial amount of open space and planting areas at ground level into which the buildings were set- a highly unusual form for the central city.
The three pavilions remaining comprised two ward blocks and one combined ward block and administration/entry. They were the most decorative blocks and demonstrate the symmetry of a building complex which once covered an entire city block. The ward blocks incorporate wrought-iron balconies which were once occupied by patients' beds and hence still demonstrate the turn-of-the-century interest in fresh air as a healing agent.
Commensurate with its role as the leading hospital in Victoria, the Melbourne Hospital was the most up-to-date with regard to facilities and planning, and occupied a central place in the heart of the city. Designed by J J & E J Clark and built between 1910 and 1916, the bold red brick blocks of the complex topped by turrets and towers, set above a bluestone wall, plaisade fence and garden behind, once comprised a significant landmark in Swanston and Lonsdale Streets.
Along with Flinders Street Station and the City Baths (designed by the Clarks in 1902), the Melbourne Hospital was an Edwardian landmark in a city noted for its Victorian architecture. The Melbourne Hospital was the culminating work in the long career of notable architect J J Clark whose first major design was the treasury Building in 1857.
The site and buildings are also significant for having been occupied by the Melbourne (later Royal Melbourne) Hospital from 1846-1946, and then by the Queen Victoria Memorial Hospital (later Medical Centre), an insitution established in 1896 by, and for, the women of Victoria.
Classified: 'Local' 09/12/1982
Revised: 'Regional' 01/05/1986