SITE investigations are underway for new Fraser Coast Regional Council buildings in the whale watching capital of the world.
Fraser Coast Mayor George Seymour said the new Administration Centre and a new Library being facilitated through the Hinkler Regional Deal would be iconic spaces that would bring Council staff and services closer together in the Hervey Bay Town Centre area.
The Hinkler Regional Deal is an Australian Government initiative in partnership with the local councils that seeks to build on the area’s strengths to provide economic growth and long-term employment.
“The Fraser Coast Regional Council, in partnership with the Australian Government through the Hinkler Regional Deal, is embarking on a new program to breathe new life and opportunities into the Hervey Bay Town Centre,” he said.
“Building an improved civic precinct is a key part of the town centre revitalisation with the new administration building project set to provide residents and businesses with centralised, efficient Council services.
“Geotechnical and environmental assessments are being carried out and land surveying is under way to confirm the suitability of one of the sites on Main Street.
“Once completed, these works will inform the design of the new buildings, including site footprint, proposed structure and the locations of essential in-ground services such as electricity, telecommunications and water, among other things.”
Federal Member for Hinkler Keith Pitt said the development of a new city centre in Hervey Bay was an important component of the Hinkler Regional Deal.
“Hervey Bay has always been a popular destination for a lifestyle change as well as retirement, however as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, even more people are looking at regional centres to relocate to,” he said.
“We all know our region is a fantastic place to live, but we do need to have the right facilities to support the projected growth and a dedicated CBD, with a new council administration building and a library, are key features of this planning.”
Cr Seymour said while the site investigations were an important step towards delivering the new buildings and the town centre revitalisation program, there was still a lot of work to do before any construction occurred.
“The revitalisation program will ensure the renewal of the Hervey Bay Town Centre and is set to be a community-shaping opportunity that will significantly enhance the quality of local life for generations to come,” he said.
“There has been extensive community consultation in recent months to help develop a new master plan for the town centre, with close to a thousand responses received for an online survey.
“In coming weeks, Council will be releasing a Hervey Bay Town Centre Draft Master Plan that draws on the ideas put forward, with a second round of consultation to occur before the plan is finalised.
“I encourage residents to stay informed on this project by registering their interest on Council’s Engagement Hub website to receive updates, further information and opportunities to be involved.”
For more on the Hinkler Regional Deal, click here.