The History of the No. 2 Goods Shed

At Kool Kidz @ Goods Shed Docklands, we are very proud to have our childcare centre in such a lovely historical building. The atmosphere here is simply amazing. It is classified by the National Trust and included on the Victorian Heritage Register.

The No. 2 Goods Shed was originally a large railway freight shed in the former Spencer Street rail yards off Flinders Street Extension. The building was constructed in 1889, originally called ‘A Goods Shed’, and at the time was the longest single building in Australia. The building has an overall length of 370m.

The outside walls are solid brick with bluestone sills, slate tiled gable roof, three gabled roofs with clerestories or lanterns is supported on cast iron columns at nine metre intervals with angle iron truss-framed roofs, central trusses span 15 metres side spans 9 metres. Terracotta lumber is used in the upper floor for fire prevention. Twenty six arched doors are on the east side and twenty eight on the west side with loading platforms for horse-drawn vehicles on the outside, and rail platforms to three tracks internally.

The No 2 Goods Shed was built in in 1889-90 to replace previous timber and corrugated iron structures which were no longer adequate for the increased freight experienced in Melbourne during its boom in the 1880s. The contract was awarded to builders A.P. Tozer and Company for £72,943 17s 5 1/2d. The office section was extended to the north in 1907.


As part of the redevelopment of Melbourne Docklands, the shed was cut in half with the construction of the Collins Street extension. The northern part of the shed was redeveloped by Places Victoria, with the construction of a tall black glass ‘Lantern’ building and refurbishment of the interior, designed by Elenberg Fraser. The southern half (known as The Goods Shed, 707 Collins Street) was developed by the Walker Corporation, and has been restored and converted to offices for Pearson Australia, and Penguin Random House. It is now the home of Kool Kidz Childcare’s Docklands location.


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