CBD UPGRADE: The Fraser Coast Regional Council's preferred site at Main St. Photo: Contributed
CBD UPGRADE: The Fraser Coast Regional Council's preferred site at Main St. Photo: Contributed

Next step for council HQ, Bay CBD makeover

A NEW Hervey Bay library and community hub could be co-located with a new Fraser Coast Council administration centre in Main Street in Pialba as part of plans to revitalise the city's CBD.

At the Wednesday council meeting, councillors considered a report on the Hinkler Regional Deal program of projects and recommended co-location of Council facilities at Main St as the preferred option with co-location at Hillyard St as the second option.

Councillor David Lee said "The Hinkler Regional Deal provides a once in a generation opportunity to revitalise the heart of Hervey Bay and make the Pialba CBD the city's primary destination for commercial activity, cultural engagement, education and social recreation," he said.

Cr Jade Wellings said Council purchased two sites at 23 Main St and 7 to 19 Hillyard St (the old Pialba Hotel site) in Pialba last year as potential locations for a new library, community hub and administration centre.

"As part of its due diligence work, Program Manager Savills has recommended co-location of Council facilities on Main St as the preferred option as it is a more visible and central location than Hillyard St," she said.

The second preference site for the Fraser Coast Regional Council’s new administration, library and community hub at Hillyard St. Photo: Contributed/ File
The second preference site for the Fraser Coast Regional Council’s new administration, library and community hub at Hillyard St. Photo: Contributed/ File

"Council has accepted this recommendation, and the Program Manager will now commence more detailed project planning and due diligence on both sites to validate and recommend the ultimate location for the new administration building and library, community hub.

"Regardless of the final decision, the Hillyard St site is a strategic land parcel which is integral to council's vision for an active and vibrant city heart," Cr Wellings clarified.

Cr Lee said the council was also looking to establish the functional elements of a disaster co-ordination centre as part of the project, taking a multi-use approach by repurposing training and meeting rooms as needed.

Cr Lee said there was a lot of detailed planning to do before any design and construction works occurs, including issues such as traffic flow and pedestrian connectivity but the decision was an important step towards delivering a major project that will help revitalise the Hervey Bay CBD.

Cr Wellings and Cr Lee, along with Cr Denis Chapman, are the council's representatives on the Community Consultation Group for the project, which also includes local business, education, tourism, indigenous and community representatives.

The Community Consultation Group will hold its first meeting next week.

Council will now seek further engagement with the Australian Government on its preferred site layout during the detailed planning phase.