The Bendigo GovHub is one of the key components of the next generation of projects for our city that could help quarantine us from the harshest aspects of the economic fallout of the global pandemic.
The other vital ingredients include the new law courts, ongoing works at the Bendigo TAFE campus and a bevy of privately funded investments proposed for other commercial sites across the CBD.
Together these projects add up to several hundred million dollars of building work, with an estimated flow on for the regional economy estimated to be just as much again.
That's a level of investment many cities would embrace, and so should Bendigo.
A decade or so ago, Bendigo navigated its way through the global financial crisis on the back of the new Bendigo Bank building development in the heart of the city and the redevelopment of almost all of our schools, and then we segued into the new Bendigo hospital development.
Our city's economy has managed to avoid many of the bumps in the road that others fell victim to, setting us up to capitalise on the advantages of being so well positioned, both financially and geographically.
Rather than find reasons not to undertake any, some or all of these projects, Bendigo's best interests would be served by finding a way to make it happen.
The benefits of doing so would be expected to last for generations. The fallout associated with turning away from the GovHub could also be expected to linger.
Some aspects of the GovHub proposal might not be satisfactory for some in our community, but they are far outweighed by the need for progress.
Bendigo needs to find a way to commit to the development, while continuing to seek more support from the state government. That's how relationships work.
The circumstances under which this project was first conceived have changed dramatically in recent months.
This supports a case that says yes to the GovHub, but also asks how do we make the deal even better, not just for us, but for the generations to follow.