The state government has not ruled out taking office space in the historic Old Treasury Building, which is up for grabs following its decision last week to seek expressions of interest from developers.
Under its original redevelopment plan, which was quietly shelved late last year, the government was intending to house the departments of treasury and premier and cabinet within the old treasury building and a new nine-storey modern office tower, totalling 15,000 square metres of space.
A further 2,000sq m was required for commercial and retail use.
Department of Housing and Works director general Bob Mitchell this week told WA Business News the accommodation project for the Treasury and DPC was entirely separate to the expression of interest campaign for the Old Treasury Building.
However, the government may consider taking up some space within the redevelopment depending on what was proposed over the coming months.
“The use of any office space by the state government in the redeveloped Old Treasury Building will be subject to what the proposal has in terms of both office space and lease costs,” he said.
Mr Mitchell said it was working with both departments to ascertain their space requirements and would launch a separate expression of interest campaign in the next few weeks.
High on the government’s wish list for the heritage precinct bordered by St Georges Terrace and Hay, Barrack and Pier Streets is a five-star hotel and new office complex to be complimented by a public square and City Library.
Should a hotel be the selected model, a developer or hotel operator would own the hotel by way of a 99-year lease from the government.
Breaking with tradition, the government is taking a clean slate approach to the site and in keeping with the new strategy, will not give any indication as to the preferred size and form of the project.
The government will hold an industry briefing for interested proponents on July 11.
Mr Mitchell said it wanted to leave these types of decisions up to the developers in the first instance before considering the proposals in consultation with the heritage council and the City of Perth at a later date.
“The process is about inviting developers to give us their ideas and we’ll leave it to the creativity and imagination of the property sector.”
The government will examine whether or not it will make a financial contribution to the project during the EOI campaign, which it expected to be complete by the end of the year.