No signs of the building boom slowing down

THE building boom in Wellington Shire doesn’t look set to stop any time soon, with subdivisions and new builds happening all over the shire.

Despite a predicted COVID downturn, in the 2020-21 financial year to February 2021, 50 plans of subdivision of land were within the Shire of Wellington, according to Land Use Victoria data.

Overall, Gippsland’s building industry had a strong year in 2020, with building permit approvals rising by almost 24 per cent, despite the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Victorian Building Authority issued 8348 permits in the region in 2020, up from 6750 in 2019. It was the biggest increase in approvals in regional Victoria, suggesting more people are moving to the region.

It was the biggest increase in approvals in regional Victoria, suggesting more people are moving to the region.

Statewide, the industry finished 2020 off strong, with the number of building permits issued across Victoria back above pre-pandemic levels, and the highest permit approvals of the past two decades.

The Victorian Building Authority issued 10 per cent more building permits in 2020, 113,430 – up from 101,998 the previous year.

Even with a pandemic, 2020 had the highest number of building permit approvals in the past 23 years.

Building authority chief executive Sue Eddy said the industry was resilient and the building and construction sector would continue to be paramount to economic recovery.

“Last year was unprecedented,” she said.

“This year we all need to continue to adapt and collaborate, even more than we have, to help industry flourish and our economy recover.”

In the first quarter of this financial year, building permits issued with a building permit number were 13 per cent higher than the same period in 2019-20.

Not surprisingly, mid-year data showed that there had been a drop in permit applications during the lockdown.

Domestic and residential buildings, which make up the majority of all building applications, fell to about 13 per cent and 12 per cent respectively in April, and 10 per cent and 11 per cent respectively in August.

Despite this, they rebounded in September and continued to grow for the remainder of the year.

Ms Eddy said new life would be breathed back into the industry with the federal government’s HomeBuilder Grant Scheme and the state government’s $5.3 billion Big Housing Build.

The HomeBuilder scheme has generated over 25,000 applications from Victoria as of February 26.

The majority are for new builds (20,726) and 4707 for renovations.

WELLINGTON Shire has seen an increase in the number of building permits issued.

For the three months to December 31, private building surveyors issued 345 permits with an estimated value of $46.5 million.

For the previous quarter, up to September 30, 312 permits were issued with a value of about $28.7 million.

Permits were issued for upgrades to change rooms and toilets at Sale Oval, a new arts and technology centre at the Gippsland Grammar Garnsey campus, and a new library at Sale 545 Primary School.

New land estates in Maffra, Sale and Stratford are continuing to show high levels of residential development.

Meanwhile, Wellington Shire Council has provided an update on its operations.

Works have begun on the first stage of upgrades at Sale Oval, the change rooms under the main grandstand.

Design works have begun for the redeveloped pavilion at the Maffra Lawn Tennis Club, with concept designs presented to club.

Works have begun on site traffic management and open space upgrades at the Briagolong Recreation Reserve.

As of February, the new change rooms at the Stratford Recreation Reserve were nearing completion.

At Sale Tennis Club, court resurfacing works are due for completion in late March.

Council has successfully applied for government funding for the widening of Pound Rd East, which is south of Yarram, and Sloping Bridge at Alberton West.