One of Brisbane’s most iconic buildings is set for a new lease on life, with West End’s historic Tristram’s soft drink factory to undergo a refurbishment and add to the local area’s burgeoning retail and dining options.
The Soda Factory development will pay homage to the building’s nearly 100-year history and original use as a soda making and bottling facility for iconic Queensland soft drink brand Tristram’s.
Located on the corner of Boundary and Mollison Streets, the building currently operates as The Markets at West End but following completion of a upgrade to the main Coles tenancy the remainder of the centre will undergo a complete refurbishment and modernisation.
The property was acquired by SCA Property Group in 2014 for $32 million from a private investor. The property last underwent a major redevelopment in 2001 when it was owned by Heritage Pacific.
On completion in late 2021, Soda Factory will include 22 speciality stores, a Coles neighbourhood centre and 220 car park spaces.
A complete revitalisation of the building, including major upgrades to the mall and outdoor dining spaces celebrates the industrial heritage through materials and detailing to create a relaxed, timeless palette with an urban edge.
The refurbishment will include a new internal mall area, new travellators and lift, upgraded amenities, activated street frontage and redeveloped car park. The building’s heritage elements will be retained with a particular focus on restoring and rejuvenating the building’s main façade.
SCA Chief Executive Anthony Mellowes said the redevelopment of Soda Factory would preserve its historic value while creating a vibrant new shopping and dining precinct for the local community.
“The Soda Factory is instantly recognisable to most people in Brisbane and it is important that it continues to be a West End landmark for generations to come,” he said.
“Our team, together with our consultants, have worked tirelessly to develop a solution that we think the community will love and shoppers will embrace.”
In March, the same journal announced that the well-known builder Walter Taylor (who the Walter Taylor Bridge over the Brisbane River at Indooroopilly is named after) secured the contract for this work. The cost of the new brick building with concrete floors was estimated at $45,000.
Upon its original completion, it was regarded as exemplary — demonstrating new attitudes towards industrial architecture and the growing trend towards landscaping buildings.
The building remained in use by Tristrams until 1979 before it was sold and converted into markets.
While the Tristram’s soft drink brand was discontinued after it was sold to Cadbury Schweppes in the 1970s, the Tristram family still operates a successful food manufacturing business called Trisco Foods with facilities at Carole Park and in Colorado Springs in the United States.
Trisco Foods Chairman Ian Tristram, who’s grandfather Eric Tristram commissioned the original factory, said the family was thrilled SCA would be preserving the building’s links to its original use.
“The family has watched the building change and grow over the last 50 years and we are honoured SCA has chosen the name Soda Factory to reflect its history,” he said.
“It is a testament to the original designers and builders that it still retains its charm and functionality nearly 100 years after being built. We look forward to seeing the finished product.”