A decision on the Armidale central mall $3.3 million redevelopment funding application will be made soon

MALL DEVELOPMENT: Armidale Regional Council service leader Lindsay Woodland.
MALL DEVELOPMENT: Armidale Regional Council service leader Lindsay Woodland.

THE FATE of the controversial mall redevelopment funding application will be decided in February.

The $4.6 million proposal will see the mall opened to traffic.

So far the entire project has been shrouded in uncertainty, even from Armidale Regional Council service leader Lindsay Woodland.

“We don’t have a final design yet, we don’t know what we’re designing,” he said.

Without concrete design plans approval for the $3.3 million application for state government funding could be compromised.

The decision to apply for the funding was made two days before the new council was formally sworn in.

That’s the reason why council staff could not consult the community, Mr Woodland said.

“We decided to bite the bullet and go ahead with this plan,” he said.

“However, we couldn’t consult the community on specific plans until the new council came in.

“We were very close to caretaker period and if we started that conversation I don’t think it would have been appropriate.”

The Community Connect Engagement Centre opened in December.

Armidale central mall redevelopment King and Campbell concept plans

Since then more than 400 people have visited in person, and 600 submissions have been made online.

Aboriginal stakeholders still have not been consulted about the removal of the reconciliation fountain.

And, the formal consultation period closes February 16.

The last thing we want is businesses going out of business because of something we’ve done.

Lindsay Woodland.

Mr Woodland was confident the project would be completed within a two year period.

He said council was dedicated to finding a concept design the community is happy with.

“The last thing we want is businesses going out of business because of something we’ve done,” he said.

Mr Woodland encouraged members of the community to visit the Community Connect Engagement Centre in the mall. Submissions on the design can be made on council’s website.

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