The building was built in 1930 with Neo-Renaissance Victorian-style, surmounted with colossal Greek and Roman columns. The Perak River Hydro-Electric Power Company was established in London in 1926 with the objective to supply power to the tin mines and tin dredges in Kinta Valley. Subsequently, it becomes the largest power provider in Malaya, and now the building is utilised by the national electricity board, known as Tenaga Nasional Berhad (TNB).
The name of “Perak Hydro Building” was taken based on the original function of the department which means the provision of natural sources of electricity from the water flow that generates turbine rotation, or the term used was Generation. In addition, the basic TNB concept system used was GTD which is the abbreviation for Generation, Transmission, and Distribution.
According to the sources, the building was originally a three-storey building. However, after five to ten years, another level was constructed, and the architecture of the building also changed.
Originally, the building was the headquarter for TNB in Ipoh or best known as Kinta Electrical Distribution or KED. However, the building did not accommodate the increased number of the staffs; thus, a new building was built and moved to Lahat Road in the early 1990s.