The Old Ipswich Courthouse on East St.
The Old Ipswich Courthouse on East St.

‘Alternative solution’ found for Old Ipswich court

THE DEVELOPER behind plans to transform one of Ipswich’s most notorious eyesores says security has been upgraded after a series of incidents involving squatters.

While remaining tight-lipped on what was in store for the former Ipswich courthouse, Newground Capital Partners Associate Director Robert Bathke said development plans were “in progress”.

“It has (stood empty a while) but development plans are in progress but are unfortunately quite sensitive for us. We can’t divulge anything (at this stage),” he said.

He said the building, located at the corner of Limestone and East streets, had been the target of vagrants but security had since been improved.

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“It was a while ago but the building was occupied a number of times,” he said.

“Vagrants broke into the building and did quite a lot of damage to the building.

“(They left) rubbish internally and also stole building fittings.

“But we have since secured it and for months we have had nothing.”

Built in 1981, the building served as Ipswich’s courthouse up until 2010, when the current facility on Ellenborough St opened.

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The State Government sold it for $3.3 million in 2014 and it has remained vacant since.

Mr Bathke shot down suggestions made by the Queensland Times earlier this week that the former courthouse was being repurposed to accommodate allied health services.

“Initially when we became involved in the building, we launched a marketing campaign but other than calling for expressions of interest, we haven’t done anything of that nature and it’s never been our intention,” Mr Bathke said.

“We looked at health but we pretty much looked at anything – but we pretty quickly found an alternative solution.”

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