$200m Geelong CBD project under way on Mercer Street | Geelong Advertiser
Geelong Advertiser, Tuesday 18th August 2020
The earth has been turned on one of the region’s biggest projects, with the $200m development expected to create 1000 jobs and help boost the local economy amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
WORKS on Geelong’s new $200 million Mercer St civic precinct are under way, with contractors taking over and clearing the Mercer St carpark site.
The work marks the start of the creation of almost 1000 jobs to boost the local economy amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
The City of Greater Geelong recently reaffirmed its commitment to hiring local workers and suppliers, with Fyansford company Perry Demolitions hired by builder Watpac to begin works by clearing the CBD land.
The City of Greater Geelong and Quintessential Equity will partner on the $220 million project to build the new six-storey city headquarters and a 12-storey commercial building developed by Quintessential Equity, with the city pitching in $102.5 million of the costs.
“This major City and commercial investment in the heart of Geelong is vital to driving future business confidence in central Geelong, especially during these times of economic uncertainty caused by the COVID-19 pandemic,” City of Greater Geelong chief executive Martin Cutter said recently.
“Importantly, with the cost of the project coming from borrowings and some asset sales at a time of record low interest rates, this project will provide significant support to our local economy when we need it most, without impacting on residents’ rates.”
The city and Quintessential Equity appointed builder Watpac to deliver the major project, with a target set for 60 per cent local procurement to help create about 900 jobs for businesses and suppliers in the region. Contractors have taken over the Mercer St carpark to start works on the new council office.
Quintessential Equity Executive Chairman Shane Quinn said the civic precinct was a “landmark project in Australia’s fastest growing regional city”.
“Through our focus on local procurement and creating opportunities on the ground, this precinct will help to boost the local economy at a time when this is so critically important,” Mr Quinn said.
“Together with the City of Greater Geelong, we see this as a key shovel-ready revitalisation project for the region which will no doubt kickstart further development in central Geelong.”
The city had tasked developers with delivering an “iconic” centrepiece for the city through the project, with COX Architects. The City’s new office features exposed mass engineered timber elements, a more sustainable and cost-effective alternative to traditional construction methods, to create a light-filled and contemporary workplace.
“This project will serve as a catalyst and a benchmark, which will guide the development of Geelong for decades to come,” Mr Ness said. “It has the potential to create local jobs, support sustainable development and bring significant potential to grow an advanced CLT manufacturing industry in Geelong.”
Designs for the new HQ boast the highest standards of sustainable design, including a 6-Star Green Star Design and As-Built Rating and a 5 Star NABERS Energy Rating.