South Australia’s police museum is moving to the CBD
The South Australian Police Historical Society will move from the soon-to-be-razed Thebarton barracks to a prominent corner in the southern CBD.
The new site for the South Australian Police Museum. Photo: Tony Lewis/InDaily. Inset photo: South Australian Police Historical Society/Facebook
The state government has secured a lease for the museum at the former AAMI state office on the corner of King William Street and Sturt Street, opposite the King’s Head Hotel and the City South tram station.
The two-level corner office building holds 1064 square metres of office space, 659 square metres of warehouse space and 441 square metres of showroom or parking space, according to leasing agents CBRE.
The Department of Infrastructure and Transport lodged a development application last week to change the property’s land use to a police historical museum and install a new lift and car hoist.
The South Australian Police Historical Society is one of 15 police business units located at the state heritage listed Thebarton barracks which have had to find a new home to make way for the Malinauskas government’s $3.2 billion Women’s and Children’s Hospital.
The society said it would pack up its Thebarton barracks museum “in the very near future”.
“While we are sad to be leaving Thebarton Barracks which has been our home since 1996, we are looking forward to a new and exciting phase for our Organisation,” the society said in a Facebook post last week.
“Despite needing to move, The South Australian Police Historical Society (Est 1977) will remain a volunteer-based association that aims to preserve and promote the history of the South Australia Police and of law enforcement in South Australia since 1838.
AAMI and Fujifilm have previously occupied the corner office. Photo: Tony Lewis/InDaily
“At our new home we will continue to display various artefacts, uniforms, vehicles, and information related to the history of the South Australia Police since 1838 as well as conduct research and education on the history of the South Australia Police in liaison with other associations with similar objectives.”
The society said the new museum will open later this year or “by early 2025 at the latest”.
The state government allocated $114 million to move six of the 15 business units located at Thebarton barracks – the most controversial being the police horses and dogs which are moving to a patch of government-owned land in Gepps Cross.
Thebarton police barracks. Photo: Tony Lewis/InDaily
The new museum will be one street away from a new staging area being built for the police horses on Wright Street behind the SA Supreme Court building. The staging area will house the horses when they are floated in from Gepps Cross for operations in the CBD.
Among the other police business units preparing to leave Thebarton barracks is the Adelaide Road Safety Centre, which is moving to the West Beach Parks precinct on Military Road.