Mas­sive project

Shepparton News - Country News - - FRONT PAGE - By Rod­ney Woods

A $7 mil­lion cool­store and pack­ing shed project that is es­ti­mated to pro­vide up to 100 jobs in peak sea­son and up to 50 in the off-sea­son is planned for con­struc­tion in Ard­mona.

The planned cool­store and pack­ing shed is set to be lo­cated on a site of a for­mer nut orchard on the corner of Ard­mona Rd and Mid­land Hwy.

The Prima Fresh Or­chards & Cool Stores project would be de­vel­oped on 14.32 ha and the pro­posal to­tals 26 640 sq m (2.67 ha) of build­ing floor area with a max­i­mum build­ing height of 11.2 m.

The de­vel­op­ment also pro­poses a to­tal area of 57 167 sq m (5.72 ha) which is 40 per cent of the land.

At last week’s meet­ing, Greater Shep­par­ton City Coun­cil unan­i­mously voted to grant a plan­ning per­mit to use and de­velop land for a large cool stor­age and pack­ing shed com­plex, al­beit with a raft of con­di­tions at­tached.

Coun­cil­lors had met ob­jec­tors to the pro­posal, who largely ob­jected based on amenity im­pacts, noise, truck move­ments as well as pos­si­ble prop­erty de­val­u­a­tion.

How­ever, of­fi­cers were sat­is­fied the ap­pli­ca­tion achieved ac­cept­able plan­ning out­comes due to the value it added to the

agri­cul­tural base of the Goul­burn Val­ley and max­imised em­ploy­ment as­so­ci­ated with hor­ti­cul­ture in Greater Shep­par­ton.

Of­fi­cers did not be­lieve the amenity im­pacts were un­ac­cept­able.

Prior to the item com­ing to coun­cil, tours of the ex­ist­ing Prima Fresh fa­cil­ity and dis­cus­sions be­tween coun­cil and the com­pany had oc­curred.

Fol­low­ing the meet­ing, Mayor Dinny Adem re­mained con­fi­dent the con­di­tions ap­plied would ad­dress ob­jec­tors’ con­cerns.

‘‘We are pro­mot­ing busi­nesses to set up in Shep­par­ton,’’ Cr Adem said.

‘‘We want the jobs here . . . even con­struc­tion is go­ing to gen­er­ate a lot of eco­nomic stim­u­lus.

‘‘To me, it (the pro­posal) ticked all the boxes.’’

Cr Fern Sum­mer hoped min­i­mum dis­rup­tion would be caused to sur­round­ing prop­er­ties, but said the ben­e­fits out­weighed the neg­a­tives.

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