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Whitsunday Regional Council is today launching one of the most extensive marketing campaigns ever undertaken within the Whitsunday region, which will couple property sales with regional economic development.
Mayor Jenny Whitney said the “Building a Better Whitsunday” campaign marks the beginning ofCouncil placing high calibre commercial land assets for tender with the focus on economicdevelopment outcomes while at the same time utilising the funds derived from the sales to reduce Council’s debt.
“Whitsunday Regional Council is beginning the campaign by calling for tenders on a 2.1 hectareprime parcel of land located on Waterson Way right in the heart of Airlie Beach,” she said.
“It is rare for such a large parcel of land to be offered for sale, right in the centre of town.
“The site is adjacent to the new Woolworths supermarket and also links with the newly revitalised Airlie Beach Main Street.
“A development lease is being offered for the property, meaning the successful tenderer will begin construction immediately.
“This also means the Whitsunday community will benefit from the jobs and economic growthassociated with this development straight away,” she said.
Mayor Whitney said last week Council delivered the budget for the 2014-15 financial year whichfocused on paying down debt and restoring responsible financial management.
“The launch of the Building a Better Whitsunday campaign delivers on these commitments, whilealso stimulate economic development in the region,” she said.
“Council is motivated to build a better Whitsunday through the development of Council ownedparcels of land that provide specific economic development outcomes for the community.
“The continued revitalisation of the Airlie Beach Town Centre allows greater employment diversity and economic prosperity for the entire region.
“The money raised from the sale of this land parcel will go a long way towards helping to pay down Council’s $73 million debt to $67 million by the end of 2014-15.”
Council’s Chief Executive Officer Scott Waters said this strategic parcel has had the attention ofour Councillors and our executive team, for quite some time.
“We are very focused toward working with a successful tenderer to have this site transformed in a way that benefits our community as soon as possible,” he said.
“Council Officers have worked extensively over the past 6 months in preparing the site for sale and I seek to give all tenderers confidence that this Council will continue to act constructively toward achieving a great development outcome for the site.
“The release of the Waterson Way parcel for tender builds on the region’s economic confidencewith developments such as the Cove at the Port of Airlie, Regatta Waters and Whitsunday Acresdemonstrating the high quality of the sites currently available in the region,” he said.
Council has partnered with international commercial property marketers Knight Frank and law firm McCullough Robertson to provide the highest level of marketing and probity guarantee through the tender process.
Managing Director of Knight Frank in North Queensland Craig Stack said the Whitsunday Regional
Council is taking the lead in engaging with the private sector to create beneficial outcomes for the wider Whitsunday region.
“Other councils have offered development incentives if a development is completed within aspecific time frame and a commitment to fast track the approvals process so that this timeframecan be met,” Mr Stack said.
“When a council offers this on its own land though, you recognise how serious they are toachieving good development.
“The weighting in the Tender Evaluation Process is favoured to award the completion of adevelopment that can show it increases employment, enhances economic adversity in the TownCentre and takes into account connections with adjoining sites,” he said.
Tenderers can lodge submissions by early October 2014.
The same marketing, probity and ultimately tender model will be utilised for large commercialproperties that Council owns across the entire Local Government area.
Council has worked closely with Knight Frank and Whitsunday Marketing and Development Limited in launching the Building a Better Whitsunday website:
The Waterson Way tender will be marketed both nationally and internationally, coordinated byKnight Frank and managed by McCulloch Robertson Lawyers.
So far Council has identified 19 other parcels of land including residential, commercial,industrial and multi-unit zoned lots throughout the Whitsunday local government area will alsobe put up for sale.
For media enquiries, contact:Kate Lennox, Communications ManagerPhone: 07 4945 0614, 0427 458 369 or Email: firstname.lastname@example.org