Temple Gallery auction extended

The exterior of the Temple Gallery and apartments in Moray Pl, Dunedin. Photo supplied.
The exterior of the Temple Gallery and apartments in Moray Pl, Dunedin. Photo supplied.
Dunedin's Temple Gallery and adjoining apartments on Moray Pl are now for mortgagee sale by auction, having been on the market for almost four months.

The 146-year-old Victorian building, once a synagogue and later a freemasons' temple, was converted into two apartments and the Temple Gallery about 20 years ago.

The two-storey 960sq m building is now designated mixed-used residential and commercial. The art gallery has potential for conversion into a retail site or cafe. It has capital value of $460,000.

An auction by Harcourts, scheduled to close today, has been extended to March 6.

The building opened as a synagogue in 1864, making it the oldest synagogue in New Zealand. It was expanded in 1872 by architect David Ross, then converted in 1881 to a masonic hall, which it remained for the next 111 years.

The building was bought in 1992 by husband-and-wife developers and art dealers Peter Duncan and Victoria Timpany.


Building evolution and archaeology

Change inevitably occurs to buildings over time. It's normal and expected. There are appropriate conservation and adaptive reuse methodologies available to meet individual building requirements and assessments of heritage significance, in ways that provide for sympathetic ongoing and future building use and redevelopment.
In Dunedin there's a very experienced, interconnected sector of the building industry devoted to successful outcomes for the retention of historic heritage. There's also a significant number of motivated owners bringing their buildings up to code requirement for building performance. Enhancing performance and attending to cyclical maintenance - irrespective of central government 'frighteners' arising from the disaster in Canterbury - is what responsible building stewardship is all about. No need to panic if you're in receipt of appropriate structural engineering advice taken together with expert building conservation advice - in tracking due diligence for your property investment and, where commercial, attracting long-term leases through sensible business planning. Most costs can be staged.
New Zealand Historic Places Trust (NZHPT) is able to provide pointers, outlines and 'where-to-start' options for how to obtain best advice for the care of heritage buildings, structures and sites - there's little mystery involved. Phone or visit the NZHPT Otago/Southland Area Office in Princes St. Google their contact information. Their services are free. Why be a stranger.

The Temple

The Temple's interior (in particular) is magnificent and a wonderful space, but personally I would be a bit terrified to take it on becasue of the implications of earthquake strengthening and any renovation work required, coupled to the historic building status.  

I can't help wondering how much violence would need to be done to the building's fabric to bring it up to an appropriate earthquake resistance - and at what cost?   I wonder what the views of the Historic Places trust are on that, given the substantial changes in the building's original structure in the 1930s and the 1990s.

The Last Templar

Thank you for the site reference. With it's European Old World associations, different from Scots heritage, the building is a treasure.

Dunedin Synagogue (Former)

The building (item B402) is listed in Schedule 25.1 of the Dunedin City District Plan. Protection required: synagogue facade to Moray Place, stone wall on street front and wrought iron fence and gate.

The building (originally built c.1864) is registered as a Category I historic place (Regn no. 9606) by New Zealand Historic Places Trust. You can read the registration report here which explains its history and significance.



Is the Temple building an historic place and are there restrictions on structural redevelopment?

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