Exterior of the Heritage-listed Hotel Windsor in Melbourne.
The Heritage-listed Hotel Windsor in Melbourne.

Indonesia’s Halim Group, which owns Melbourne’s historic Hotel Windsor, has until 31 March next year to complete its planned $350 million redevelopment of the site after a time extension request was today knocked back for the fourth time, despite work not having commenced.

The Halim Group, which purchased the 1883-built – and now heritage-listed – Hotel Windsor in Melbourne from the Oberoi Group in 2005, first announced plans three years later to demolish part of the rear of the property in order to build a 26-storey luxury hotel adjacent. These plans were approved in 2010, however, it took six years for partner firms to carry out architecture, interior design and construction to be named, with work promised then to begin in early 2017.

However, nine years since the original permit was approved and not a sod has been turned since an extension to the construction permit was last granted three years ago.

Under planning regulations at the time, the development was approved for a 92-metre high tower – 67 metres higher than the current 25 metre Spring Street height limits and the 40-metre height limit at the rear on Windsor Place which have since been put in place. Victoria Planning Minister Richard Wynne said the same application for development would be instantly rejected if it were made today.

“The developers have failed to secure finance or show a real willingness to get construction started despite having nine years to do so.

“The Windsor Hotel is a Melbourne icon and we’re protecting it – and the unique character of the Bourke Hill precinct.”