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$50m development proposal 'not the answer' to township's parking woes

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The developer proposing a six-storey residential and commercial building in central Nambour says the project is unlikely to be the answer to the CBD’s much-discussed parking woes.

The Arm Property Development’s $50-million development would replace five existing commercial buildings – many of them vacant – on the corner of Bury and Currie streets, virtually adjacent to the Council’s current building.

It will include 60 apartments, along with commercial tenancies that include a large childcare centre, and hopefully retain current tenants such as a gym and coffee shops.

Rod Constantinides, of Arm Property Developments, says responsibility for parking in the Nambour CBD should instead lie primarily with Sunshine Coast Council.

“I know that we are going to have to comply with some parking requirements – the stupid thing will be if we have to go and build extra basement for cars when there’s no carparking already on site (currently),” Mr Constandinides said.

Currie Street, Nambour, including the proposed development site on the corner of Bury Street.

“If we just renovate the existing commercial (tenancies) there now, we don’t have to put in any car parks and there’s 2500 square metres of commercial there, so I think the Council will have to come to some trade-off there, and they should be building their own carpark to help the town, not rely on the developers to do it.

“I think a degree of carparking is obviously required, but if they make us go another basement down, it might not be (feasible) and it would be a shame to not to see it go ahead.”

An artists’ impression of a $50m six-storey residential and commercial building proposed for central Nambour.

As Council has not yet received a development application, it has declined to comment about the project, the related parking issue and also how such a development would impact commercial activity in the Nambour CBD.

“Once it is received, this application will be thoroughly assessed on its individual merits and a report will be available for public reviewing once the assessment and recommendations are finalised,” a Council spokesperson said.

The location of a $50m six-storey residential and commercial building proposed for central Nambour.

The current buildings are described as “old” but will be upgraded to attract tenants while any development approval process proceeds.

“They’re all old buildings. They’ve all got asbestos. We’re getting most of it removed at the end of this month, and then we’re going to tidy them up because obviously a development like this takes years, so we’ll get some people into a tidier building until then,” Mr Constantinides explained.

“We’ve had a pre-lodgement meeting with council. Overall, they’re pretty happy with where we’re going with it. There’s a few things we’ve got to tidy up for them, which is fine.

“We’re doing our numbers to see if it even makes sense financially, and then after that we’ll probably approach some childcare centres, or businesses to see if anyone is interested in being a part of it, and get the approvals and, if it makes sense, we’ll build it over the next few years.

A design image of the six-storey residential and commercial building proposed for central Nambour.

“In a good case scenario, if it gets approved in the next six to 12 months, and then it’s probably two years to build, so in three years it could be finished if all goes to plan.

“If the community comes to the party and supports it and helps the council to encourage it along that’ll help things happen.”

Mr Constantinides said studies suggested developments such as this encouraged the commercial success of CBDs.

“We need better public transport, and we need more people living in the city where they work.”

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