An image from the new Coffs Harbour City Council website dedicated to providing information on the Cultural and Civic Space.
An image from the new Coffs Harbour City Council website dedicated to providing information on the Cultural and Civic Space.

Another Facebook page in the information mix

A NEW Facebook page and website have been created to provide information and answer questions on the proposed Cultural and Civic Space project.

The website: www.heartofcoffs.com.au and Facebook Page: @heartofcoffs have recently been created by Coffs Harbour City Council and advertised in the print media.

The website includes a stylised fly through video and images of how the completed $76.52million Gordon Street project will look in the context of the existing streetscape.

 

 

Residents are urged to put their questions to council through these new channels.

"This page is an initiative of the Coffs Harbour City Council to create an online space for residents, ratepayers and interested stakeholders to receive accurate and timely information on the Cultural and Civic Space project. This Facebook page is monitored by the council and any questions about the project will receive responses. To find the facts you can visit www.heartofcoffs.com.au," the first post on Wednesday reads.

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Cultural and Civic Space in limbo

It follows a full-page advertisement taken out by Mayor Denise Knight, addressing what she describes as 'several inaccuracies' in relation to the project.

Cr Knight has repeatedly assured ratepayers that the project will not lead to rate rises and that at no stage has any component of the project been kept hidden.

Opponents of the project claim that council offices were included within the design at the last minute but Cr Knight has always denied this telling the Advocate last month:

"Council offices have been part of the plan since 2016 - this has always been clearly stated," Cr Knight said.

 

An image from the new Coffs Harbour City Council website dedicated to providing information on the Cultural and Civic Space.
An image from the new Coffs Harbour City Council website dedicated to providing information on the Cultural and Civic Space.

Despite these assurances the public consultation process behind the controversial CBD project has been widely criticised.

Deputy Mayor Tegan Swan, who has voted against proceeding with the project and was involved in a walkout which delayed a crucial vote on it, has recognised this shortfalling.

As a result she created a separate Facebook Page in August following a prolonged stalemate with Councillors split four-four on the matter and backlash to the project by some sections of the community.

 

Existing buildings along Gordon Street are yet to be demolished to make way for the project.
Existing buildings along Gordon Street are yet to be demolished to make way for the project.

Called 'Coffs Community Conversations' Cr Swan posted a video outlining her reasons for creating the page:

"While we ask people to take part in discussions or give feedback we're not doing the best job in actually reaching our community, and given what's just happened, that's become really really obvious, and I would like to take personal responsibility for doing that better," Cr Swan said.

She has also moved a motion that council reassess the way they communicate with the public.



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