Inaction is symptomatic of the malaise that has bedevilled Gosford Council

Letters to the editor

Our Central Coast Council owned, former Broadwater Hotel, at 53-71 Mann St, is currently the 17 year planned location for the new Regional Library, but only approved late last year.

Combining this proposed major infrastructure project with the Regional Performing A r t s / C o n s e r v a t o r i u m would arguably release an additional $10 million plus. This could be combined with the already promised $32 million, for the also unbelievably delayed Regional Performing Arts/ Conservatorium (RPAC) complex. Council could also consider purchasing other adjoining properties and air space towards Donnison St, which would then create unlimited car parking to compensate for the loss of up to 600 car spaces, following Council’s non consultative and untimely sale of Kibbleplex, immediately after their five year, $7 million Federal Government funding agreement expired, in February 2016. Whatever happened to the $7 million grant?

Maybe this could be added to the already available $42 million, therefore around $50 million, would go a long way towards paying for both these long promised community assets. The previously well maintained 16 residential rooms in the former hotel have remained vacant during the current long term ownership by council, together with much of the other space. Council had a second chance to purchase the Broadwater Hotel, for planned redevelopment 17 years ago. This proposed development would have demonstrated leadership and may even have encouraged the long awaited revitalising of our city. Such inaction is symptomatic of the malaise that has, and is continuing to bedevil Gosford.

Maybe it’s still not too late for council to consider showing leadership, negotiate and purchase part of the adjoining properties/ air space towards Donnison St. This would then create unlimited car parking to compensate for the inept sale of Kibbleplex (another lost possible RPAC site) during the current exponential level of DA approvals. Interestingly, a pedestrian walkway to the Baker St Boulevard, a feature of the Gosford City Masterplan, will be built by the developer to provide direct access from opposite the present council Mann St administration building, via stage one of the Waterside redevelopment. Demolition is imminent, and this council approved three towers, and up to 37 storeys in a complex that is the result of previous council neglect to approve previous lesser buildings on this recognised and obvious gateway to Dane Dr and the waterfront. It’s no wonder Gosford has never even had a Town Hall.

Peter Turnbull, Point Clare