Planning Panel to Rule on Council Site

A decision on MidCoast Council’s development application for a centralised Council administration office in the former Masters site on Biripi Way is expected to be made when the Hunter Central Coast Regional Planning Panel meets next in Taree on 24 February.

Concept illustraion of council’s proposed centralised complex at Birpi Way Taree.

Offices in Gloucester, Stroud, and Tea Gardens will continue to operate as they are and are not affected by the plans.

Council also has a customer service point in Forster’s Civic Precinct under construction.

The Hunter Central Coast Regional Planning Panel is an independent body that assesses application documents, such as the statement of environmental effects, the economic impact assessment, traffic impact assessment, public submissions made during the exhibition period, as well as the relevant planning legislation and policies.

The panel was originally to meet earlier in February, however the date was changed for the availability of panel members.

Expressions of interest are being called for operation of the proposed café at the site, with a closing date of 19 March.

Likewise Council issued a tender to the companies previously shortlisted for the ‘head contractor for construction’ yesterday.

Council’s General Manager, Adrian Panuccio, said this was important to the overall timeline of the project and ensuring work is completed by the end of the year.

A decision to undertake the project was made by Council in April 2019 following community consultation on the financing strategy for the project.

Following a tender process Council has engaged Colliers International Newcastle to market the properties identified by Council to be sold or leased as part of the $20 million financing strategy for the centralisation project.

The first properties to be marketed will be vacant land on Chapmans Road, Tuncurry and the two Breese Parade, Forster offices. A resolution of the elected Council is required prior to the sale of any property.