Construction of the new Department of Primary Industries building is 21 days ahead of schedule with a ceremony held on Tuesday to celebrate completion of the top of the building.
Amid strong winds and a dust storm Minister for Water, Industry and Housing Melinda Pavey joined Orange City Council, government department, developer and construction company representatives who climbed to the top of the four-storey construction site.
Ms Pavey said the $80 million project, which will house 800 state government staff, was set for completion within months.
"It is a big boost for our economy particularly in time of drought," she said.
"We're at the halfway point, [it will be] finished at the middle of next year.
"It is a very, very exciting project. It will dominate the skyline. Orange deserves this."
Ms Pavey said she hoped such projects spurred Sydney people to visit or move to regional areas including Orange.
"I see it as a flagship city of the regions. It's got the culture, it's got the experiences, it's got great food and wine and coffee, it's got great farmers, it's got great mines, it's a great health service, it's got great universities," she said.
Orange mayor Reg Kidd said the project was "critical" to Orange.
"It is my wish to see more government departments decentralising into regional NSW. It is does work and this has been the one that's proven that it does work," he said.
Jody Gosling, director of the building's developer Verde Property Group, said the project was ahead of schedule.
"We are very proud of the economic benefit and employment this project brings to Orange," she said.
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