Heritage and historic conservation

We have a long-standing commitment to protecting and promoting built heritage and we're working to protect, conserve and promote the rich heritage across the city. Discover the programs and initiatives that enable us to showcase our heritage and tell the City of PAE story.

State heritage places in PAE

There are more than 200 state heritage places around PAE. These places have significance to the state in terms of their history, cultural significance or architectural merit, or due to their association with an important historical figure. We work hard to ensure that new developments conserve, respect and protect PAE’s valued historic and heritage places, spaces and areas, as well as the character of local streets.

For the full list of state heritage places in PAE, visit the South Australian Heritage Places Database, and refine the search to Port Adelaide Enfield.

Built Heritage Strategy

We developed the Built Heritage Strategy 2022 after engaging with the community, businesses, building owners and heritage interest groups. Their feedback has enabled us to develop eight draft Heritage Directions with actions and commitments to continue to protect, embrace and celebrate PAE’s unique and rich heritage.

Heritage advisory service

We provide a free advisory service for owners of heritage buildings who are seeking to undertake work on their properties through building, conservation and maintenance work. If the work constitutes 'development', the Heritage Advisor can give you free advice on how to maintain the heritage value of your place and how to prepare a suitable development application. Our Heritage Advisor is generally available on Wednesdays, so give us a call to arrange an appointment.

Phone for an appointment with the Heritage Advisor

Heritage grants

Heritage Grant

OPEN until funding exhausted.

Up to $3,000

The Heritage Grant program aims to encourage owners of Local Heritage Places and Representative Buildings to maintain, conserve or restore places of local significance.

Heritage Plaques program

We are working with owners of heritage-listed properties to help celebrate and raise awareness of part of this history through the Heritage Plaques scheme. From time to time, we contact landowners of heritage properties, inviting them to consider having a heritage plaque installed on their property. To date, a total of 72 plaques have been added to a mix of commercial, institutional and residential buildings across PAE. The Heritage Plaques Map includes information about the location of the current and previous year’s sites, as well as historic details, photos, links and other interesting information about each property.

Local history services

Get lost in our area’s past with the City of PAE’s Local History Collection, located at Port Adelaide Library. Look through our collection of books and photographs, family history, Birth, Deaths and Marriages indexes, cemetery records and maps. We also have dedicated Local History Officers on hand to assist you with all your local history queries.

SA History Festival

South Australia’s History Festival is an annual statewide event exploring South Australia’s history. In PAE, we offer a range of workshops, programs and talks each May as part of this initiative.

Port Adelaide State Heritage Area

As the first of only 17 such sites in South Australia, the Port Adelaide State Heritage Area is particularly important to the state’s maritime history. Port Adelaide contains the state's most substantial and continuous group of colonial buildings, many of which were directly associated with Port Adelaide's original function as the state's major port. The Port was the principal gateway to the colony for immigrants and supplies, and it developed rapidly as a shipping, transport and industrial hub. The historic government and commercial buildings in the Port are evidence of its prosperity and importance during the mid- to late 1800s. The heritage precinct contains more buildings of continuous historic character than anywhere else in South Australia, and it is a rare and excellent example of colonial architecture in South Australia.

Museums, tall ships, historic buildings and more

The State Heritage Area contains the South Australian Maritime Museum, with the National Railway Museum and the South Australian Aviation Museum also nearby. The Visit Port and Coast website is your go-to resource for exploring Port Adelaide and surrounds. Explore all the things there are to see and do, plan accommodation or design the perfect day trip.

Visit Port Adelaide app (Walk the Port)

A treasure trove of SA’s heritage awaits you in Port Adelaide, and the best way to discover its delights is to Walk the Port! The app features an interactive map, daily updates, tours, an interactive ghost trail for kids, accommodation and more. To get your free Visit Port Adelaide App, download it from Google Play or the App Store.

Current heritage engagements

From time to time, we ask for your feedback about heritage projects and developments. Current open engagements relating to heritage matters will be displayed here.

Heritage FAQ

A full listing of heritage properties in PAE is available on the South Australian Heritage Places Database. Simply type in your address to check whether your home is listed.

No. Because a heritage building may be associated with a locally famous person, a significant event of importance to the community or a structure that demonstrates an innovative design or construction of its era, it may be less than 100 years old. For example, in our most recent heritage survey, the City of Port Adelaide Enfield Heritage Review 2014, it is suggested that better representation of some 20th-century South Australian Housing Trust houses is needed.

Generally speaking, yes. Under planning legislation, alterations or additions to a heritage building are classed as development, and therefore they require approval. However, it does depend on what is being proposed – so we encourage you to get in touch with our duty planner, who can give you more information.

Call 8405 6600 to speak to a duty planner

The Department for Environment and Water provides a list of heritage architects and tradespeople who specialise in heritage conservation works. The purpose of the list is to assist heritage owners and consultants to engage the right person to undertake conservation work, provide heritage documentation or give advice. However, skilled heritage professionals are not isolated to this list alone, and owners are free to consult other tradespeople and consultants not included on this list.