Frequently Asked Questions

Below are our most frequently asked questions;
What research and modelling has been completed?

LIVING CITY is well researched and modelled.  With fifteen years of planning and research behind the project, LIVING CITY is supported by a range of comprehensive documents including a Project Financial Model, Cost Benefit Analysis, Regional Benefits Analysis and Risk Management Plan.

Council has used external consultants to confirm that LIVING CITY is an economic reality for the Region. 

 

Regional Benefits Study
Hill PDA is a Sydney based, highly regarded Economic Consultancy Firm.  In late 2014, Council together with the Department of Economic Development engaged Hill PDA to complete an independent study into the likely benefits and opportunities of LIVING CITY to the broader North West region of Tasmania.  
This report quantified that LIVING CITY represents approximately $280 million in construction value over a 5-8 year period.  This represents 801 direct construction job years and 2148 indirect job years.  Each job year represents one full-time job for one year.
   
The report also estimated that LIVING CITY will generate $112 million in additional output annually into the economy and 830 full time on-going operational jobs and significant indirect on-going jobs.

 

Cost Benefit Analysis
Hill PDA were also engaged (requirement of Federal Funding grant) to estimate the Cost Benefit of the project.  
A Cost Benefit Analysis (CBA) differs from an Economic Impact Assessment in that it quantifies both the external economic, social and environmental costs and benefits (or welfare impacts) of a project. 
Hill PDA calculated that LIVING CITY will have a positive net benefit to the whole of the NW Region.  
Full copies of these reports can be obtained from Council’s Customer Service Centre or on the Documents page.

 

How much did Stage 1 of LIVING CITY cost?

Stage 1 of LIVING CITY was a significant financial decision for Devonport City Council. 

LIVING CITY Stage 1 cost $71M.  Stage 1 of LIVING CITY was funded by the State Government ($13M), a grant from the Australian Government ($10M) and Council.

Whilst LIVING CITY Stage 1 required Council to make a significant investment the final borrowings were $6M less than originally forecast ($33M rather than $39) and debt was secured at lower than expected interest rates.  

LIVING CITY has been factored in Council's Long Term Financial Plan.  

 

How will LIVING CITY be staged?

LIVING CITY will occur in three stages.

Stage 1 (Civic Precinct) is the catalyst for the whole project and enables the remainder to occur by releasing land to be used in later stages.  Stage 1 of LIVING CITY consists of the following four major elements:
  • Four level multi-purpose civic building including a new LINC over two floors, Service Tasmania, Council offices and an 800 seat multi-purpose conference facility/function space;
  • Food Pavilion (Providore Place) specialising in local produce;
  • Multi-level Carpark with approximately 500 spaces; and
  • Market Square and precinct landscaping.
Stage 1 facilitates the Retail Precinct development, by releasing land currently occupied by the LINC for privately funded retail development.
 

The project also facilitates the Waterfront Precinct development, by providing a new retail space for Harris Scarfe, thereby freeing up the land required for a hotel and public space.  

Works in the Southern CBD Precinct will occur upon market demand and can continue to be undertaken concurrently with other stages.

 

How did Council go about selecting a a firm to build the hotel within the Waterfront Precinct?

Council undertook an open Expressions of Interest process to determine the preferred proponents for the Waterfront Hotel.  

Fairbrother Pty Ltd was chosen as the preferred proponent and will be responsible to develop, finance and construct the hotel and to appoint an operator.  

Council will sell the required land to Fairbrother Pty Ltd for an agreed price of $1.18M.  

 

Will LIVING CITY result in rate increases?

Whilst LIVING CITY Stage 1 required Council to make a significant investment the final borrowings were $6M less than originally forecast ($33M rather than $39) and debt was secured at lower than expected interest rates.  

Commercial properties purchased by Council as part of LIVING CITY have had a positive impact on Council revenue providing a solid rental return. 

LIVING CITY Stage 1 was completed under budget. 

Strong economic activity as a result of LIVING CITY has had a positive impact on Council’s rate revenue. 

Council has been able to control rate increases whilst delivering LIVING CITY. The general rate for residential properties has only increased by 1.5% in the five year period from 2013 until 2018, which is substantially lower than cpi over this period.  

Council is not borrowing any money to undertake the Waterfront Parkland. The $15M construction project is being funded by a $10M Australian Government grant and $5M from Council’s cash reserves

 

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