Jetty Strip's new tourist potential
RETAIL rivals, the Bachrach Naumburger Group and Gowing Bros are locked in a big business game of commercial property investment, which in coming years will revitalise Coffs Harbour's Jetty strip.
BNG, owner of Park Beach Plaza and Park Beach HomeBase, has played the latest move, securing ownership of the former State Government-owned Public Works building at 359 Harbour Dr for $3.225 million after both firms were locked in a bidding war through a sale by tender process.
That adds to the group's $8.6-million acquisition of the Jetty Shopping Village in March last year, while Gowings is planning major development of the former Forestry NSW site it purchased for just over $3-million in 2016.
Retail giants make plans for the future
Fresh tourism appeal looms on the horizon for Coffs Harbour's Jetty Strip precinct with two of the city's largest commercial investors planning major development of their key land holdings.
The old Public Works site at 359 Harbour Dr, standing between the properties owed by the Bachrach Naumburger Group and Gowing Bros has been one of the most sought after State Government-owned sites to be placed on the market in recent years.
After a bidding war between the companies, the BNG Group has acquired the site, positioned between the Jetty Shopping Village which it purchased in April last year and the old Forestry building site bought by Gowings in 2016.
The site sold for $3,225,000 and the sale was effected by LJ Hooker Commercial's Troy Mitchell on behalf of the State Government department Property NSW.
Bachrach Naumburger Group general manager Steve Gooley said the company held major development plans for its connecting properties which front Harbour Dr and Orlando St.
"We were very interested when (the site) came onto the market. By owning the Jetty Village Shopping Centre that then enables us to combine both blocks for a very good development here," Mr Gooley said. "But that won't be for about five or six years.
"There is a lot of planning involved, but we were very happy to get hold of the works block to combine with the Jetty Shopping Village.
The site's mixed-use development B4 zoning and the prospect of elevated ocean views proved an enticing prospect for developers.
"Council rezoned a lot of the land in the Jetty probably close to 10 years ago now and we are really keen to be able to develop what will be the start of a real benchmark in the Jetty area," Mr Gooley said.
"We have done some very rough outlines of some of the things we will look to do. It will definitely be accommodation and will definitely have some retail components, maybe a small commercial component, but there is a lot of water to flow under the bridge in our designs in terms of what we actually do in the end.
"The Jetty, I think, is one of the main contributors to Coffs Harbour's economy, it certainly was a couple of hundred years ago and I think it is reversing to that again as a very sought-after place to live.
"I think the Jetty is a thriving place and it is going to change a lot in the next 10 years.
Under the sales conditions, the site carries a leaseback to Property NSW for three years, with an option for three more years, with annual reviews.
"The government is entitled to stay there for six years if they like, we understand that and we've planned for that," Mr Gooley said.
Since acquiring the former NSW Foresty site on the corner of Harbour Dr and Mildura St in 2016, Gowing Bros, the owners of Coffs Central and Moonee Market, has lodged a development application with Coffs Harbour City Council to demolish five buildings on the site, with the view of a future mixed retail and accommodation development.
For Coffs Harbour, the prospect of major developments incorporating hotels and retail will only add to the tourism appeal of the Jetty Strip's popular restaurants, cafes and pub.