Asbestos-Riddled Red Cross Hall in Greenslopes Could Be Redeveloped for Community Use


The Red Cross Hall in Greenslopes, a heritage-listed site built in 1945, could be redeveloped for community use after authorities conducted extensive surveys on site and deemed it as “unrepairable.”

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Located at 112 Newdegate St, the World War II hall in Greenslopes has been enclosed with a barrier since 2013. The Department of Veterans’ Affairs sought the help of experts, including a structural engineer, construction manager, heritage architect and quantity surveyors to find out what could be done to restore the site.

However, whilst conducting the survey, they learned that the structure was found to contain asbestos and other hazardous materials, making it unrepairable according to the Department.

Now, plans to redevelop the site for the use of the Brisbane community emerge. Another option is to develop the site and preserve its significance and honour its history. But that’s still subject to an agreement between the Federal Government and the Brisbane City Council. The DVA consulted the residents living nearby and found that all they want is for the safety of everyone.

The Asbestos Disease Support Society that youths appear to have been risking their health by climbing onto the asbestos roof of the abandoned Greenslopes Red Cross Hall.

Regarding this, Minister for Veterans’ Affairs Darren Chester said that they will transform the land into a community space where children can play and families gather together. 

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“As part of the process of designing the park, the local Councillor, Cr Fiona Cunningham, will conduct community consultation,” Mr Chester said.

About the Red Cross Hall

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Formerly an Australian Army hospital, the Red Cross Hall at Greenslopes consists of hall and hostel buildings that were built in early 1945 to support ­recuperating returned ­soldiers.

Volunteers staffed the Red Cross Centre. Many were women who wore the Red Cross uniform complete with hats, gloves, stockings and lace up shoes. The volunteers looked after the library, did office work or “general ward work” such as shopping, taking messages and writing letters for patients. They also cared for relatives visiting patients by providing morning teas for both patients and their visitors.

Post-war, the Red Cross continued to operate the hall by providing similar services for service personnel and veterans, such as arts and crafts, a workshop and a separate library for tuberculosis patients.

Aside from a hall and a library, it features a billiards room, reading rooms, handcraft store, workroom, and storeroom. However, due to the poor condition of the building, it was closed for public use in 2013.