Council's Decision to Sell Heritage Landmarks Sets Stage for Revitalized City Centre Development
In a pivotal decision, the Wyndham City Council has voted overwhelmingly in favour of selling the historic Bridge Hotel, located at 197-199 Watton Street, Werribee. The move aims to rejuvenate the Werribee City Centre and usher in private investment, which is expected to benefit the local community and support the growth of the city centre.
The Bridge Hotel, a heritage building that was once vacant and deteriorating, has been successfully revitalized through Council investment and a partnership with a reputable long-term operator. It has now become a vibrant food and beverage venue. With this success under its belt, the Council has deemed it prudent to sell the property to further advance the city centre’s development.
The revenue generated from the sale of the Bridge Hotel will be placed into the capital reserve, potentially funding other projects to enhance the Werribee City Centre. The West End Car Park Site will remain under Council ownership, with future catalyst development possibilities.
The timeline for the property sale is expected to unfold as follows:
– Engaging a surveyor to prepare a plan of subdivision and facilitate separate titles by November 28, 2023.
– Engaging a valuer and arranging an Environmental Certificate Audit by October 28, 2023.
– Publishing a notice of the Council’s intent to sell the land and initiating community engagement by October 28, 2023.
– Appointing a solicitor for the conveyancing process and the preparation of the contract of sale and section 32 by October 28, 2023.
– Appointing a real estate agent to sell the property by December 5, 2023.
– Property advertisement for sale in December 2023.
– Settlement, expected within 5-9 weeks from the signing of the contract of sale.
The financial implications of this decision are expected to be minimal for the Council, with the property sales revenue contingent on market conditions and evaluations. The revenue may be allocated to the capital reserve for future enhancements of the Werribee City Centre.
In terms of policy strategy and legislation, the acquisition and divestment of properties by the Council will adhere to the provisions of Sections 112 and 114 of the Local Government Act 2020. The proposed property acquisitions and divestments will align with these provisions, including a transparent process involving public methods such as auctions, tenders, or expressions of interest (EOI).
This landmark decision also aligns with the Wyndham 2040 Community Vision and Council Plan, specifically aiming to implement the Werribee City Centre Strategy. The sale is expected to enhance the city center, make it more family-friendly, vibrant, and economically robust.
Sustainability will be a key consideration in the divestment process, in line with the Wyndham Environment & Sustainability Strategy 2016-2040.
The Council plans to notify the community of its intention to sell the Bridge Hotel site in accordance with the requirements of the Local Government Act 2020.
In conclusion, the sale of the Bridge Hotel represents a strategic move by the Wyndham City Council to infuse fresh vitality into the Werribee City Centre, promoting growth, investment, and community benefits. The revenue generated will be a valuable resource for future city centre enhancements, aligning with the city’s long-term vision.