Rock Master Publications:
Sublime Climbs - A Guide to the best rock climbing venues in Victoria, Australia.By Kevin Lindorff, Josef Goding & Jarrod Hodgson. Over 700 climbs, 158 phototopos, 36 maps, and 380 pages covering the best of Mt Arapiles, Mt Buffalo and the Grampians $45.00
Obviously, a real shame and must be terrible for the owners and staff. Its an interesting story, I don't know anything about the situation but the previous owners were good people (I lived in Hobart for 2 years around 95). bomber pro used to work there, I'd blame it all on him :)
I agree with rightarmband's sentiments. From reading the details on the gyms home page it looks like the slumlords have a lot to answer for. I hope the tenants nail the dodgy slumlord and then open shop elsewhere, or vice versa.
The sign on the door says that the lease has been terminated - but that's only part of the story.
What led to the lease being terminated - well:
54 Bathurst Street has been declared by a leading engineer to be in such a poor state of repair that it should not be used until it is repaired. His report is downloadable below. The insurer for The Climbing Edge appointed the engineer to come into The Climbing Edge during a smallish rain event and record the amount of water coming in through the roof and look at how the drainage under the building did not function properly. What would the engineer have said if he had come into the building when water comes through the roof like it is being poured out of a tip truck and the dirty rubbish and fish laden street water wells up through the inspection pit inundating the basement. Anyone who climbs regularly at the gym has seen it. The Fisher Family, who own the building, have denied in a letter to The Climbing Edge that that has ever or could ever happen.
As a result of the engineer's report, no insurer will insure 54 Bathurst Street, Hobart.
Since December 2007, the building has flooded on 38 different occasions. That's major inundations. That doesn't include the fact that every time Hobart has the lightest shower, the building leaks all over the place damaging equipment, matting and stock. Throughout 2008 and 2009 the Fisher Family denied in writing that the building suffered any major leakage. Then in 2010 The Climbing Edge invoked their rights under Section 25 of the Retail Tenancies Code of Conduct Regulations (download below). Basically those regulations say that, if a building is damaged the tenant doesn't have to pay any rent or the proportion of rent that should be paid on the unuseable portions of the building, until the landlord fixes the damage and all of that should be backdated to when the damage first happened. It is obvious to everyone that more than 50% of the building is affected by water leakage and cannot be used. On that basis, The Climbing Edge backdated losses and rental paid on damaged areas against the rent paid, as though it was rent in advance and notified the Fisher Family that they would continue to pay rent on that basis until the property was repaired and functional.
#2. It is perfectly reasonable and it is the law that, if a landlord wants to receive full Market Value Rental then they must provide a building that is in tenantable condition. 54 Bathurst Street is not tenantable.
At that point the Fisher Family admitted in writing through their lawyers, Murdoch Clarke, that they had known that the building had leaked for more than 20 years. The Fisher Family say that they were under no legal obligation to inform the current owners of the leaking before they agreed to take on the building. They took the line that The Climbing Edge has no right to refuse to pay rent on damaged areas and also said that the Retail Tenancies Code of Practice Regulations do not apply. The Climbing Edge wrote to the Department of Consumer Affairs and Fair Trading who administer the regulations. That Department confirmed that The Climbing Edge is completely covered by the Retail Tenancies Code of Practice Regulations.
Instead of negotiating the rental to reflect the state of the building and organising repairs, the Fisher Family increased the rental for 54 Bathurst Street by 50%. Now they have terminated the lease.
The Fisher Family also says that, a few years before the current owners took over The Climbing Edge, they replaced the entire roof on 54 Bathurst Street. It is that roof that is the subject of the engineer's report. That is the same roof that causes most of the water damage in The Climbing Edge, the repairs which the Fisher Family does not pay for. The Fisher Family lawyers, Murdoch Clarke wrote to The Climbing Edge saying that even though the Fisher Family installed the roof, they will not repair it. In fact, they say that they require the owners of The Climbing Edge to repair the roof, at a cost of around $250,000. They call it "maintenance". Read the report and see if you think that it is maintenance or repairing a roof that never was up to standard.
The Climbing Edge asked Hobart City Council to do tests on the drains under 54 Bathurst Street to see why they do not take away stormwater, but instead spew it into the basement level of the gym. The Hobart City Council found that there are several major blockages in the drains under the building and property searches had revealed that those drains are privately owned by the Fisher Family, who are required to upkeep them. The Fisher Family lawyers wrote a letter saying that they admitted that they knew about the drains and that they knew that the Fisher Family was responsible, but that they believed that Hobart City Council should repair the drains, as none of the water that actually uses the drains belongs to the Fisher Family.
In late 2007 in an attempt to stop the roof from leaking, the Fisher Family sealed over every window in the building with laserlite. In hot weather the building becomes unbearably hot. The Fisher Family sent several letters saying that even though they sealed over the ventilation, they require the tenants to install alternative ventilation for the building. They got their lawyers Murdoch Clarke to send a letter in the same terms as well.
#3. We are taught as children that if you mess it up - you clean it up ... if you break it - you fix it. The Climbing Edge has not done anything to cause or add to the problems that cause the flooding at the gym. The Fisher Family admit that they installed the roof that leaks and that they own the drains that are blocked. The responsibility is theirs.
The Climbing Edge was sold to the current owners by Rex and Barbara Matthews on 2 October 2007. The contract for that sale was subject to the purchasers (the current owners) agreeing to rent the building from the Fisher Family. During the lead up to that date, Rex Matthews and Adam Fisher asked for a meeting with the purchaser to discuss the building. During that meeting in mid 2007, neither Rex Matthews nor Adam Fisher disclosed the history of flooding. This is something freely admitted by the Fisher Family lawyers. Had they been made aware of the severity and extent of the flooding, the current owners would not have agreed to rent such a building and therefore, would not have purchased The Climbing Edge.
A letter from Murdoch Clarke advises The Climbing Edge that the Matthews' had suffered many floods as owners of The Climbing Edge and that the Fisher Family had paid for much work to be done on the building in an attempt to repair the leaking roof. They also put it in writing that the legal obligation to make the flooding known before the sale went through, was with Rex and Barbara Matthews and that the Fisher Family were under no obligation to disclose the flooding to the purchaser. Just a few weeks after the Matthews sold The Climbing Edge to their unsuspecting interstate buyer, a major flood occured on 11 December 2007 closing the business for 3 days, causing damages in excess of $350,000 to equipment and stock. By the way, insurance has never paid out on any floods. The repair bills have been carried by the current owners.
The cost of repairing all of the flood damage, along with the increased rental charged by the Fisher Family and the problem and embarrassment of constantly operating The Climbing Edge out of a severely water damaged and flood prone building, has made running The Climbing Edge practically impossible.
Late last year, someone approached The Climbing Edge wanting to purchase the business. The owners of the business decided that they could not, in all conscience, sell the business, because of the flooding and ventilation problems. The choice was made to act conscionably and decently and reject their offer.
As a result of the closure of The Climbing 5 full time and 3 part time staff have lost their jobs.
All long term pass holders are requested to post their unused passes to the address below and a refund on the unused portions/visits on those passes will be sent to you. Make sure you include a return address.
The Climbing Edge
PO Box 4501
Bathurst Street Post Office
HOBART TAS 7000
The owners of The Climbing Edge are contemplating their options. We thank all of the customers who have patronised the business, despite it's sorry state and if we don't ever meet again, we wish you all the best.
Really sad news hope you guys can find a new home. We had to rebuild the Rock in Darwin twice after flooding but it all turned out OK it the end. We are expanding so have jobs for the boys and girls to keep you going in the industry before your hopeful rebuild.