CONSTRUCTION on the NSW Department of Industry building will start by early February after the development application was approved on Wednesday.
The Western Joint Regional Planning Panel gave the $55 million building at the former base hospital site the green light, despite several residents complaining the modern design did not make use of the sunniest areas and did not reflect heritage buildings in the CBD.
Architect John Andrews said he had completed a masterplan for the site, including medium density housing on the Prince and Dalton street frontages, all with views and solar access, and open space, although it had never been endorsed by Orange City Council.
VIDEO: What the completed building will look like …
“A southern entrance [to the building] is quite a critical thing with the sort of winters we get and something in the shade for a whole length of time is a problem,” he said.
“A parking garage that’s sitting on the sunniest part of the site I have problems with that as well.”
Developer Verto’s senior design manager, Ellis Lamond, said the building would be rated five stars with the Green Building Council of Australia, with 100 kilowatts of solar panels, double glazing and electric car charge points.
“The building has been thermally modelled – the base build’s been highly insulated to deal with different temperature spikes,” he said.
Prince Street resident Nicole Ash said she would have preferred parkland.
“As residents, our neighbourhood will be fundamentally changed with increased traffic and pedestrian access [and] greater parking issues we will need to adapt to,” she said.
MAP: Where will the building be located …
Announcing the decision, panel chairman Gordon Kirkby said all comments were taken on board, but the panel could only consider the DA in front of it.
“It is permissible with consent, it’s not inconsistent with the development control plan that applies to the site,” he said.
Verto owner Stephen Gosling echoed Mr Lamond’s sentiments after the meeting, saying the word ‘verto’ meant ‘green’.
“The company’s ethos is that we develop and own environmentally sustainable buildings,” he said.
“We’re very happy [with the decision] – we think it’s an extremely good decision for the state to be committing to Orange and we’re very happy to be facilitating their new premises.”
The building will be complete by July 2020.
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