HEAVY machinery has moved into Torquay's Bideford St complex to start the re-development of the Hervey Bay shopping precinct.

It marks the first stage of construction on the new shopping centre and service station, which has remained on the Fraser Coast Regional Council books since 2017.

Under the plan, the current BWS outlet will be demolished and a new servo built in its place, the shop front revamped and more parking spots built.

The BWS has been re-located to another store in the shopping complex.

An artist's impression of what the proposed Bideford St shopping complex will look like.
An artist's impression of what the proposed Bideford St shopping complex will look like. Contributed

Workers are currently rebuilding the service station, with the Night Owl store to be relocated into the building once completed.

The project's second stage will involve expanding the shopping complex and putting in new roofs.

Councillor Denis Chapman, who has been a vocal supporter of the development, said the construction starting "shows the confidence starting to get around the Fraser Coast".

"We need more facilities as the community grows and we want to see this area grow and be prosperous," Cr Chapman told the Chronicle.

"When you look around that (Torquay) area, there's no real fuel service nearby.

"It would be good for people to get fuel in that area without needing to use the main road."

Fraser Coast councillors approved the Bideford St complex plan in October 2017.

Developer Think Commercial lodged new documents with the council last year to alter the development, which included scrapping two proposed food and drink outlets at the complex.

 

The ground plan for the proposed Bideford St development, showing the location of the new shops, servo and drive-thru stores.
The ground plan for the proposed Bideford St development, showing the location of the new shops, servo and drive-thru stores. The drive-thru stores have been removed in the latest development plans. Contributed

The Chronicle understands the plan has been split to focus on the development of the shopping complex and servo, with plans for the drive-through outlets to come later.

The developer was contacted for comment.