THE next stage of the old Orange Base Hospital site redevelopment is on track with a $30 million housing package to begin construction next year.
Dubbo-based construction firm MAAS Group and Orange City Council have reached an agreement to develop the former Frost Ward end of the site, bordered by Prince, Sale and Dalton Streets into bespoke and apartment housing.
Under the MAAS plan, the northern edge of the site which fronts Dalton Street will be converted into 15 townhouses with construction to be completed by 2024 while on the southern or Prince Street side 61 apartments are planned in a multi-storey complex, to be completed by 2025.
The remaining space between the buildings and the DPI building will be parkland.
Council's Technical Services director Ian Greenham said the next step was for MAAS to put in a development application but he said onsite work should begin mid 2022.
Cr Kidd said that under the specifications of the agreement with the Maas, Orange businesses should benefit from the sale agreement.
"Part of the specifications is that they use local tradies, local sub-contractors, local suppliers and local materials where possible," he said, adding 80 jobs would be created by the project.
Cr Kidd said the style of the construction would also align with the surroundings, with the multi-storey apartment building to take its cues from the existing DPI site while the townhouses will be more sympathetic with the heritage aspect of Dalton Street.
"Council adopted a development control plan for the site that details the type of development that is new to Orange. Maas shared that vision and their expression of interest matched the principles that council was looking for," he said.
Deputy mayor Glenn Taylor said the development was an opportunity to diversify housing options but Cr Kidd did temper hopes it would be in the more-affordable category.
"When you go with a contractor you can't force anything, But we are looking for alternative avenues for affordable housing," he said, pointing to the $14.8 million multi-storey 48-unit plan the old Kurim Avenue Shopping Centre in Glenroi.
MAAS Group chief executive officer Wes Maas said his company was keen to get working.
"We are doing this with a high quality development on a high profile site," he said.
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