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Renovation of Victoria Hall in Chennai may restart after one month when the metro rail work near the two-storey building gets completed. It may be remembered here that renovation of the hall was last carried out in 2012 at a cost of Rs 4 crore by the Corporation. However, the Metro work in nearby area has damaged the structure rendering the earlier renovation work a waste. The Corporation is expected to issue fresh tenders for renovation, once the Metro authorities hand over the site to them.
In 2012, walls on the ground and first floors were re-plastered with lime mortar. Staircases, cast iron columns and fan holdings were replaced and chemical varnish was applied on the red brick walls, followed by a fresh coat of paint.
Victoria Public Hall, or the Town Hall, is a historical building in Chennai, is one of the finest examples of British architecture. It served as a theatre and public assembly room in the late 19th century and the early 20th century. It now houses the South Indian Athletic Association Club. The hall, an example of the Indo-Saracenic architecture, was designed by Robert Fellowes Chisholm in the Romanesque style and was built by Namperumal Chetty between 1888 and 1890.
Constructed with red brick and painted with lime mortar, the rectangular building has an Italianate tower capped by a Travancore-style roof. The two large halls in the ground and the first floors were built to accommodate 600 persons each, while a wooden gallery in the eastern end has seating arrangement for more than 200 persons. The structure consists of arcaded verandahs along the northern and southern sides in the hall on the first floor supported on sleek Corinthian stone columns, a square tower that is three storeys high, and a carved pyramidal roof. There is also an intricately carved terracotta cornice, which resembles Islamic calligraphy, atop the tower.