Hall tenderer submits objection to Civic Hall demolition plans

CIVIC Place Group, which won the tender for the aborted redevelopment of Civic Hall in 2007, has submitted an objection to the current council plan to demolish the site.

In its objection to the City of Ballarat’s planning application, Civic Place Group director Rick Thomas said the company was a long-term advocate for the retention and adaptive re-use of Civic Hall. 

“It infuriates us that the Ballarat City Council is pursuing this application to so-called ‘test’ the merits of demolition, knowing that this is totally against the Ballarat community wishes of which has been ‘clearly’ identified,” the objection said.

In 2007, Civic Place Group was awarded the tender to undertake a $90 million development of Civic Hall. However the proposal fell apart after Melbourne developer Pan Urban withdrew its financial backing for the project. 

In his objection to the current plans, Mr Thomas also said adaptive re-use was environmentally sustainable and that the council should be showing leadership in that area.

He also said any decision on the planning application should be made in accordance with the Ballarat Planning Scheme and should protect heritage.

“CPGB completely understand the full development potential of the site, what is financially viable to retain and what is financially viable to demolish. It’s a shame council doesn’t,” the objection said. 

The objection said Civic Place Group Ballarat would continue to object to demolition and would assist others with information, knowledge and expert advice. 

“CPGB has over four years of collated information and understands every square inch of the Civic Hall building, car park, overall site and its linkages,” it said.

tom.cowie@fairfaxmedia.com.au

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