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From the ground up: business

Commercial stability and success in South Australia created opportunities for businesses to build buildings with aesthetic appeal which symbolised and conveyed many moral and political ideals including corporate image or ambition, financial security, public benevolence as well as concerns with profit and company. For example banking or financial buildings are often conveying a message of commercial stability and piety, or a mining company may have a building designed to show off its primary product for example, steel.

Over the years with the development of reinforced concrete, electric lifts and the evolution of building materials such as steel and glass together with the pressures of the cost of land, the multistoried office block evolved into the sky scraper. To some it may seem that all aesthetic values have been sacrificed in favour of measurable ones of square metres and cost.

In Adelaide the multistoried office block did not make an impact until the 1950s, and has largely been confined to the central business district between Victoria Square and North Terrace.

In this time there has been a shift in the way multistoried office blocks have been designed. From an emphasis on private ownership where many were built as premises for particular companies to a shift away from this view in the 1980s with developers focussing on building for lease purposes.  Therefore the design of the multistoried office block had to evolve to be flexible enough to accommodate any tenant.

Further reading:

Marsden, Susan, Urban heritage : the rise and postwar development of Australia's capital city centres, Canberra : Australian Council of National Trusts : Australian Heritage Commission, c2000  Also viewable at http://www.ahc.gov.au/publications/generalpubs/urban/index.html

Adelaide Arcade
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Adelaide Arcade cupola
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Bank of South Australia, Adelaide
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Bank of South Australia, King William Street
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Central Market: Grote Street facade
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Fish markets: extensions
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G.& R. Wills & Co Ltd.
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Interior of Adelaide Arcade
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Moore's Department Store
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Moore's department store
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New premises for L Conrad Esq
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New premises for L. Conrad esq
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