19/12/2012 - 06:14

Mirvac takes next step in Karratha revamp

19/12/2012 - 06:14


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Mirvac takes next step in Karratha revamp

PLANS for the overhaul of Karratha’s central business district are progressing with development applications lodged and more state funds allocated to revitalisation projects.

Under the government’s Pilbara Cities initiative - in which Karratha and Port Hedland are essentially being upgraded to cater to populations of 50,000 - Mirvac is developing part of Karratha’s city centre into a new commercial and retail hub.

Mirvac says the master plan for the development will be lodged with the Shire of Roeboume Council before Christmas.

The plan involves development of a 150-room, four-star hotel, two commercial buildings with 8,500 square metres of floor area, a four-level car park, a retail promenade, and residential accommodation.

Pending the relevant council approvals, Mirvac intends to begin construction on the comer of Sharpe Avenue and Warambie Road in mid to late 2013.

The state government has also committed an additional $30 million to pay for the second stage of infrastructure upgrades in the town.

The first stage of the Karratha City Centre Infrastructure Works began in July, with contractors including Downer Australia realigning and upgrading roads in the town centre.

When the project was announced, the state government committed $65 million from Royalties for Regions to fund both stages of the infrastructure upgrades.

It has now committed a further $30 million to the project, being managed by LandCorp, which will help fund further city centre road developments, including an east-west link through the CBD.

Meanwhile, Hilton Worldwide’s plans for a $65 million dollar hotel on Karratha’s CBD fringe have also reached a significant milestone with the lodging of its development application with council.

Lead planner Lex Burnett told WA Business News the timeframe from announcing the investment to lodging the development application had taken a couple of months longer than expected, but the date for beginning construction in the second half of 2013 was still relevant.

The hotel will be the Hilton group’s first under its four-star Double Tree brand in Australasia.

It will have 144 rooms with an additional 22 apartments, which Mr Burnett said would most likely cater to the resources industry.

Despite indications of a slowing in demand for accommodation from the resources sector, other developments are still forging ahead.

Construction on the final stage of Finbar’s Pelago development on the comer of Warambie Road and Sharpe Avenue is well under way; the first stage - the 114-apartment Pelage West development - was completed in April.

Construction on the second stage - a 174-apartment development with commercial space - began in July and is expected to be completed at the end of next year.

Finbar managing director Darren Pateman said the company was yet to begin publicly selling apartments in the second stage but had already sold 50 lots to corporate companies as a result of bulk sale negotiations.



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