Balmain Reservoir Valve House

  • Number
    4570946
  • Other name
    Balmain Reservoir Booster Pumping Station
  • Primary address

    160, Booth Street Balmain, 2041. NSW
    LGA: Leichhardt
    LGA region: Sydney
    DUAP region: Sydney South

  • Alternate Address

    161, Sorrie Street Balmain, 2041. NSW
    LGA: Leichhardt
    LGA code: LEIC
    LGA region: Sydney
    DUAP region: Sydney South

  • Owner
    Sydney Water
  • Current use
    Not used
  • Former use
    Valve house with water pumping station below
  • Item type
    Built
  • Item group
    Utilities - Water
  • Item category
    Water Pump House/Pumping Station
  • Curtilage/Boundary
    The curtilage as shown on the curtilage plan. The visual curtilage includes views to and from the hospital and park.
  • Statement of significance
    The former Balmain Reservoir Valve House superstructure was constructed in 1919. The building is an interesting example of an extant early 20th century local valve house with a high degree of architectural accomplishment, located within the inner suburbs of Sydney. The building makes an important contribution to the local streetscape, being of a style that is sympathetic to the nearby Balmain Hospital, and being set within Gladstone Park forms an important element of the historic built environment of Balmain. The valve house is associated with the historical development of Balmain. The significant item is the valve house superstructure, its physical association with the reservoir, and views of the buildings.
  • Endorsed significance
    Local
  • Designer
    Metropolitan Water, Sewerage and Drainage Board
  • Builder
    Metropolitan Water, Sewerage and Drainage Board
  • Year started
    1919
  • Year completed
    1919
  • Circa
    Yes
  • Physical description
    The superstructure of the valve house is constructed of face brick with rendered parapet, stringcourse and basecourse. The illumination of the interior is provided by a generous number of timber framed windows with fanlights. The entrance to the station is from Booth Street via a timber ledged and sheeted door. The style of the building is in sympathy with the Queen Anne style of Balmain Hospital, which is situated directly opposite. Initially constructed as a valve house, pumping units were later located in a subterranean chamber of reinforced concrete construction. Access to the chamber is via a floor of heavy gauge metal plate. The valve house contains some remnant non-functional electrical equipment.
  • Modifications made
    Conservation works were completed to the valve house in 2005.
  • History
    Balmain Reservoir Valve House was completed in 1919. The building was initially constructed as the valve house for the reservoir. Later a hydro-pneumatic booster plant was added below the valve house to pump the water supply out of the Balmain Reservoir (constructed in 1915) to serve the higher parts of the Balmain peninsula. The valve house is located immediately adjacent to the west wall of the reservoir. The pump unit was driven by an electric motor. The reservoir was originally supplied from Potts Hill via the Crown Street Pumping Station. The valve house, pumping station and reservoir were made redundant by the completion of Petersham Elevated Reservoir and pumping station in 1965.
  • National
    Economy
  • State
    Health
  • Local
    Water Supply
  • National
    Settlement
  • State
    Utilities
  • Local
    Water Supply
  • Local description
    Relates to the planning, development, expansion and provision of water supply.
  • National
    Settlement
  • State
    Towns, suburbs and villages (Townships)
  • Local
    (none)
  • a) Historical
    The building of the reservoir and the valve house is associated with the historical development of the Balmain peninsula.
  • c) Aesthetic
    The superstructure of the building is an important contribution to the local streetscape, being of a style that is sympathetic to the nearby Balmain Hospital. The building also makes a substantial contribution to the setting of Gladstone Park. The style of the building is quite accomplished for such a structure.
  • d) Social
    The building in association with the reservoir is a major element of the historic built environment of the local government area of Leichhardt and provides a focus for an understanding of the development of the local area of Balmain.
  • List name
    Local Environmental Plan
  • Name
    Leichhardt LEP 2000
  • Date listing listed
    01 January 2000
  • List name
    Heritage Act - s.170 NSW State agency heritage register
  • Reference number
    165199
  • Date listing listed
    01 January 2000
  • List name
    National Trust of Australia register
  • Date listing listed
    20 July 1987
  • Title
    National Trust of Australia (NSW) Listing Proposal
  • Author
    Collocott, J.M.
  • Published
    1987
  • Title
    The Water Supply, Sewerage and Drainage of Sydney
  • Author
    Aird, W.V.
  • Published
    1961
  • Title
    38/44-1 38/44-1 35/44-1
  • Published
    0
  • Title
    Sydney Water Heritage Study
  • Author
    Graham Brooks and Associates Pty Ltd
  • Published
    1996
  • Item reference number in study
    165199
  • Looking south-west towards the  hospital and pumping station.
    Looking south-west towards the hospital and pumping station.
    Created by: CLS&P
    Creation date: 04 September 2000
  • North elevation of the pumping station superstructure.
    North elevation of the pumping station superstructure.
    Created by: CLS&P
    Creation date: 09 April 2000
  • Data entry status
    Completed
  • Entered
    03 June 2000
  • Updated
    28 October 2016