Rezoning clears way for police site sale

A MOTION to rezone the former Sale police station and adjoining properties has been adopted by Wellington Shire Council.

Pending approval from the state planning minister, the properties will be rezoned to residential growth.

The rezoning of the former police station site from public use to residential growth zone will provide scope for the land to be used for a broad range of purposes.

The land is currently owned by the Department of Justice and must be rezoned to allow for it to be sold.

Residential properties adjoining the site will also be rezoned to RGZ, following recommendations by the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning.

Given the prominent location of the site, planning controls have been prepared to guide future development.

Council expects the RGZ will provide the flexibility required to accommodate the range of land uses envisaged in council’s strategic planning documents.

Long term visions for the site outlined in the Sale, Wurruk and Longford Structure Plan include tourism, community, civic and commercial uses as well as the potential for high quality, medium density housing.

The adoption of the motion to rezone followed consideration of submissions.

Rezoning the land, Wellington Shire mayor Carolyn Crossley said, would open up the space for many opportunities.

“This land is in a prime location which could be used for many things, and we look forward to seeing what the future will bring,” she said.

Council had declined the opportunity to buythe police station site as it did not have an identified purpose for it.

While the RGZ allows for a variety of uses, councillor Patrick McIvor said council could not control the final use of the land.

“What it doesn’t do is control the outcome, because that’s not what council’s in the business of doing,” he said.

“We can’t control every space in town and decide how people privately invest their money.

“What we can do is zone it as best as we can so it does align as closely as possible with what’s in the best interests of the community, and encourage developers to use it for a great public outcome, which may include accommodation, it may include tourism, it might include houses.”