A 1000-worker "GovHub" in the CBD needs more than 168 car spaces and should not be tall enough to overshadow Bendigo's historic town hall.
Those are key messages raised by the public during a consultation session over plans to replace Lyttleton Terrace council offices with a four-story, multi-agency hub, Lyons Architecture director Neil Appleton says.
"Lots of people have come in with ideas and want to talk about the future," he said.
Feedback had been largely positive, though car parking was raised by a number of people, Mr Appleton said.
Solutions could be presented as early as August when City of Greater Bendigo councillors discuss planning strategies for the city centre, council corporate performance director Andrew Cooney said.
"We are also working on a business case for a multi-deck car park up this end of the city-centre," he said.
The business case would also help determine a location and how many extra parks would be needed for the public and staff at the new law courts planned for Bendigo TAFE's Mundy Street campus.
Bendigo resident George Waters shared concerns about parking and the number of office workers at the site before he attended Saturday's consultation session.
However, the self-professed "ardent, aggressive and assertive pro-Bendigonian" left feeling the project was one of the "most exciting architectural projects happening in Victoria".
He believed the design concept had enough scope to encourage more workers to ride bikes into town, after speaking with the project's architect.
Mr Appleton said feedback on the proposed four-story building's height had been positive.
"What we are hearing is that the low-scale nature of the building ... that it is not overshadowing the Town Hall and heritage buildings is something they like," he said.
"They like that service areas are open and easy to find."
Opinions mixed on need for new building
Not every member of the public left feeling their concerns had been allayed.
Brad Pickens had not heard much about the GovHub project and felt there was confusion within the community about the project.
"So we came down to ask questions. It's a lot of money (to build), are putting it in the right spot? What are the benefits?" he said.
He came away feeling the opportunity to discuss those concerns had passed.
"It's at the building-design stage now," he said.
"I didn't quite come away understanding the benefit of this building. Any big ... building will be really impressive, but does it improve services from where they are currently at? That's what I haven't come away with."
Other members of the public, like Anthony Guy, said change would probably be a good thing.
"I remember when they built the current council offices, when I was a kid," he said.
"I don't know. The shire offices served the town proud over the years but I really think they have outgrown it. It's time for change."
Tradies eyeing GovHub tenders
Tradies are among those preparing for their own GovHub consultation session this Tuesday.
The sessions are nearing capacity and will cater to contractors and other service providers who might have something to bring to a number of big government projects, organiser and ICN Victoria industry adviser Noel Morton said.
"It's for anyone who might be able to offer something to the construction of the GovHub, the new law courts, the Bendigo TAFE expansion and regional rail upgrades," he said.
The session will go over timelines, how to apply and when construction should begin, Mr Morton said.
For more information contact ICN Victoria.
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