Council votes to purchase Walkers building

Southern Grampians Shire Council has purchased the vacant, former Walkers Mitre 10 Building at 90 Lonsdale Street. The site, which has been unoccupied for approximately 16 years, was purchased for $1.3 million with a 30 day settlement.

Southern Grampians Shire Council Mayor Bruach Colliton said the decision was a strategic one.

“Obviously the Walkers building is in a prime CBD location and this site in particular has a high strategic importance for Council and our CBD revitalisation plans. We felt the timing was right to acquire this building and we are excited by the potential options to activate this site in the future,” Cr Colliton said.

While there is still planning and assessment to be done, the site has potential to serve a number of community needs and will be activated as soon as possible. Longer term, the space plays a critical and strategic role in both the Arts and Culture Precinct Plan and the Hamilton CBD Revitalisation plan, namely in connecting and activating the area between Lonsdale and Gray Streets.

“Council’s purchase of this property presents an opportunity to ultimately activate this important strategic site, Cr Colliton said.

“Our endorsed 2020 Hamilton CBD Master Plan, guided by extensive community and stakeholder engagement, established a framework for activation of our central places and spaces.

“The property is strategically positioned between Melville Oval and Gray Street and has connections to Corriedale and McGuigan Lanes. Furthermore, directly to the south of the property is Council’s current Civic Precinct comprising the Hamilton Library, Performing Arts Centre, Art Gallery and Business Centre, Cr Colliton explained.

“While the central car park is a mix of private and Council ownership, we have a fantastic opportunity with this purchase to consider and plan for a broader precinct to consolidate and optimise civic facilities and community functions. The further development of this civic precinct will contribute to attracting people to visit, engage and stay longer in Hamilton’s CBD and create a sense of pride and community connection for residents,” Cr Colliton concluded.

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