Maclean pushes on for a site to build supermarket

IT'S one of the biggest issues to have ever hit Maclean - and it isn't going away.

A new attempt to build a full-size supermarket on the Maclean Library site went before Clarence Valley Council Civil and Corporate Committee this week.

In a deputation to councillors by Maclean accountant Darrell Brown, the committee heard the latest proposal included a supermarket, a medical centre, retail space and a new library.

Mr Brown said the proposal involved a joint venture between four private property owners, Clarence Valley Council and a developer.

“The whole concept is that the landowners would have a passive role. The developer is the active participant and bears most of the commercial risk,” he said.

“The landowners, including council, would receive strata-titled property on completion of the project of equal value to the freehold property entered in the joint venture.”

Mr Brown said there was a number of differences between this supermarket proposal and the one rejected by council in November last year.

He said this proposal did not involve the sale of public assets and did not require a loss of carparks.

Mr Brown said the proposal involved no loss of green space, would provide better lighting for Cameron Park and did not involve any probity issues.

The proposal to build a supermarket on the Maclean Library site is not new. It goes back at least a decade when the site was identified as appropriate because of its flood-free location and proximity to the main street.

At that time - 1999 - it was determined that Maclean could turn-over $10 million per year in grocery products, but was losing $6 million per year to other towns because Maclean lacked a full-size supermarket.

At Tuesday night's committee meeting, councillors voted to defer a decision on whether to support this latest supermarket proposal to next week's full meeting of council.

However, council staff have already recommended the proposal be rejected.

Mr Brown said he was disappointed council officers didn't spend more time considering the proposal.

“If council allow this to go ahead they will get new library space and new retail space which they can use for their own purposes,” he said.

“It's quite simple. They just need to be open minded and progressive.”



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