Many of Sydney’s older style “fibro majestic’s” are being bulldozed to make way for newer, larger housing.
As the demand for land grows, there is a growing trend of knocking down the old to build modern, two-storey homes.
From the north shore to the south-west, homes from the 1950s and ’60s are being bulldozed at such a rate that architects and heritage experts worry these ”fibro majestics” and other examples of the era will disappear, and so are pushing for them to be saved.
”The issue is spread right across the middle suburbs and it’s in the high-end market as well as the rest,” Professor Randolph said. ”In Ku-ring-gai they are knocking them down as quickly as in Bankstown.”
He said the reason was generational, as younger families wanted larger houses closer to the city and it was cheaper to knock down existing ones than renovate them.
Karen Woodhouse from Dee Why, said of the 10 houses in her small cul de sac, three had recently been bulldozed to make way for new homes.
“In the five years we’ve been here, we’ve seen three older households either pass away or move out of the street to retirement villages.
“Another couple in their sixties have their home on the market and are moving to the Gold Coast. There are three other homes owned by couples edging retirement.
“All of the new families who have moved in have small children … it’s really changed the feel of the street.”
Professor Randolph said many of these fibro houses were owner-built and of poor quality, but the good ones should be saved.
”Even the ‘fibro majestic’, there’s some pretty interesting fibro houses about and that’s a real part of our city’s history,” he said. ”As long as the good stuff is kept and the not-so-good stuff is replaced … that’s the way to go.”