New chapter in Newcastle’s revitalisation story
Newcastle City Council staff’s relocation to the city’s west end next year offers up an exciting opportunity for some new occupants.See our handpicked guides to Newcastle
Published on 16 May 2018
BY JASMINE WOOLCOTT
Student or academic accommodation, legal offices and boutique accommodation are just some of the potential occupants Council is expecting to attract.
The Expressions of Interest process kicks off in July for the long-term leasing or sale of the two buildings, including the City Administration Centre
(CAC aka the Roundhouse) on King Street and the adjacent Fred Ash Building. A recommendation will be presented to Council in October.
Lord Mayor Nuatali Nelmes said the opportunity provides a chance to build a more vibrant educational and cultural hub.
“It’s been suggested that the Roundhouse building would make ideal student or academic accommodation, which would support the University of Newcastle’s inner-city growth in both the Civic and Honeysuckle precincts,” she said.
“There’s also been interest from the legal community in having more office space close to the Courthouse.”
Council CEO Jeremy Bath is also positive about the sale or long term leasing of the Fred Ash Building, confident the EOI will attract interest from overseas. He believes that the city’s growing tourism and business events market has created a need for more hotel rooms in Newcastle.
“The Fred Ash Building is perfect for a boutique hotel, a la the Ovolo Woolloomooloo at Sydney’s historic Finger Wharf,” he said.
The adjacent properties will offer future occupants many benefits, with a light rail stop planned for the front of the buildings. Both are also located across from the former Civic Station, which will be a walkway from Hunter Street through to Honeysuckle.
Council’s decision to sell or lease these buildings stems from a decision to consolidate the staff working in the different buildings to a new space at 12 Stewart Avenue, Newcastle West, as part of the west end’s rise as the city’s new CBD.