Local, Opinion/Comment

CHCC puts four properties linked to Gordon Street up for ‘sale tender’

Coffs Coast Outlook understands that the Coffs Harbour City Council (CHCC ) has advertised a tender for the sale of four of their properties.

All are scheduled to be sold to part fund the new Cultural Centre and Council Chambers in Gordon Street.

Details of the tender are below.

3.1. Administration Building, 2 Castle St, Coffs Harbour (Lot 2 Sec DP 566885, Lot 1 Sec DP 566885, Lot 8 Sec 6 DP 758258), Description- Two level commercial office building of approximately 3,172. square meters net lettable area and basement car parking. To be sold on a leaseback basis to Council on a 3+1+1+1-year lease.

3.2. Rigby House, 27-29 Duke Street Coffs Harbour (Lot 110 Sec DP 777398),
Description – Three level commercial multi-tenant office building of approximately 4,185 square metres net lettable area and basement car parking. Council occupied areas to be leased back on a 3+1+1+1-year basis.

Rigby House

3.3. 169-171 Rose Ave, Coffs Harbour (Lot 100 Sec DP 861850),
Description- Single level older style commercial multi-tenanted office building of approximately 753 square metres lettable area and at grade parking.

3.4. Museum, 215A Harbour Drive, Coffs Harbour (Lot 101 Sec DP 1041655);
Description – Single level building with a lettable area of approximate 251 square meters which has Heritage significance to be leased back to Council on a 3+1+1+1 year basis.

It seems that the CHCC continues to take no notice of the strong community opposition to the proposed “cultural space” and the fact a petition to the NSW Government to put a hold on it has now reached approximately 12,000 signatures.

Interestingly these sale tenders are clearly exempt from the ‘independent audit’ of this process that council voted to approve just over two weeks ago.

The DA for the demolition of the current buildings in 27-31 Gordon Street has just been lodged by the CHCC too.


  1. Realestate Salesman

    Great tenant for
    The first three years. Great covenant.
    You will Be surprised how much they will sell for.
    Mind you Cr Arkan is in favour of keeping them and borrowing more from banks.

    • Justin Ryland.

      Lol Arkan.
      You never which train he’s going to jump on.
      Amos rhoades and co must have had nerves when John A started on about higher debt.

      Was anyone at the council meeting and saw it.

    • Realestate Salesman – you wouldn’t be the same realestate salesman who recently accused those collecting signatures for the 10,000+ petition of being “bullies” would you? How is a lease-back covenant “great” when a large proportion of the sale price will be returned to the lucky purchaser? And as far as being “surprised how much they will sell for,” given this council’s record, we the ratepayers will never know.

      • CLB
        Certainly not same agent.

        If you knew anything about commercial real estate you would know that a tenanted property is sold on a percentage return basis.

        When the tenant is the vendor it’s called a sale and lease back which this is.
        It’s nothing new and nothing out of the ordinary.

        Would not matter what council your group would still complain.

        • Jeez Justin thanks for your informative contribution but I am aware of the meaning of “sale and leaseback” arrangements and my argument stands. Also, how could you be so sure that ‘Realestate salesman’ is “certainly not the same agent?” Are the first 2 posts above all your own work?

          • Yes, I must say I was amused when I saw Justin saying with such alacrity and certainty that Realestate Salesman wasn’t “the same realestate salesman who recently accused those collecting signatures for the 10,000+ petition of being bullies.”

            How do you know Justin? Unless you and Realestate Salesman (not women I note) are one and the same perhaps?

            ‘Oh, what a tangled web we weave
            When first we practise to deceive!’

    • Mr Realestate Salesman or is it Mr Wells?
      You may have missed the fact that John Arkan is opposed to new council offices hence no need to sell properties and no need for more debt! You may have also missed the fact that the majority support John Arkan’s position. Quite simple really.

  2. Regardless of what they will sell for there will be no grants available which is an absolute crime given the offering of funds through the Northern infrastructure fund and arts and cultural development from the NSW State Government. What kind of rogue gathering is being supported here by the few at cost to the many?

  3. Dick McDermott

    Sadly citizens this is what you get when you elect councillors without closely looking into their backgrounds. Before casting votes all ratepayers should be weighing up candidates past history as developers, demonstrated commitment to represent majority community concerns, association with other developers, business practices if appropriate, grouped candidates and how and to whom they will allocate preferences because blocks often form to get any or a specific member of the group on to council. Too often citizens react too late. The time to ensure proper development of our community is before an election not after.

    • Couldn’t agree with you more, Dick.
      In 2016, we had just relocated to the Coffs Coast and voted for the only candidate that we knew and could trust (he wasn’t elected). The NSW local government voting system is very different to Victoria’s ‘ward’ system where a candidate such as ’65 vote Adendorff’ would never be elected. It is now quite obvious just why Knight handed over her preferences to this ill equipped individual.
      Yes, voters need to do much more scrutiny, otherwise we will get a crooked and incompetent council. It would be nice, if the GM and his executive crew could also be elected by residents.
      Hopefully, an administrator will take over and sack the mayor and senior management before it’s too late.

  4. Arrogance at its best.! I am sure they have buyers and have done deals already and this tender process is just to tick the boxes like CHCC and GM Steve McGrath has done and always does. History repeating history with CHCC. Dodgy,dodgy,dodgy and they keep getting away with it. It makes me sick!

  5. robert walter yandell

    Arrogance personified.

  6. I couldn’t have said it better myself, Robert.
    A truly disgusting state of affairs.
    Minister of Local Government and Auditor General should intervene on this one. There are a lot of
    questions to be answered.
    Janne C Lindrum

  7. Blatant disregard for those in Coffs Harbour who are struggling to paycurrent rates and fear what the end cost of this monstrosity, that many believe will not meet the communities needs.
    It seems there is more to this than meets the eye.
    Corruption, kickbacks and conflict of interests seem likely

    • Marnie Wright.

      I have been reading Coffs outlook for the last few weeks. Never realized it existed prior.
      Love the alternate voice it gives the good people of Coffs Harbour. And it’s free!!
      Shocked by the level of defamatory comments made against individuals.

  8. The tenant may be a good one but there’s only three years guaranteed income on those office buildings for any incoming purchaser. The tenant is definitely moving out at some point. There is no opportunity to incentivise them to stay as there would normally be in a typical commercial situation. Then what happens with the buildings? The money that CHCC have suggested they want for them won’t leave much for any future refurbishment or redevelopment. Does the current zoning permit any suitable redevelopment opportunity? This does not stack up as a great investment opportunity in my mind.

    Also, CHCC will be writing their own lease. So what rent do they need to put on these premises to make them even remotely attractive to a purchaser? How much is that rent going to cost us rate payers. Has CHCC set a reserve sale price? What happens if this is not achieved? Is there a go/no go gateway on the new building if existing premises are not sold?

    The questions just go on and on.

    This whole cultural space project has to be stopped. There are too many questions and not enough answers forthcoming.

    • James.
      Don’t lose sleep over this. In the whole scheme of things these assetts and the new chambers library isn’t a lot of money for CHCC.
      I agree the council chambers should stay where they are. But it’s done and they gotta get on with the development.

      • J Wynn unless you are new to Coffs you must have a short memory, as it was just a few years back that our council successfully applied for a massive special rate variation claiming emphatically that CHCC had NO MONEY to address the growing infrastructure maintenance backlog. So Coffs’ ratepayers are only too familiar how this mob raise money to cover any shortfall brought about by their bad planning. To assert that $76m+”isn’t a lot of money for CHCC” is fanciful and it’s not a “done”deal just yet. Oh, and by the way, I’ll bet there are a lot of ratepayers who don’t believe CHCC has completed the infrastructure backlog yet!

        • CLB you are entirely correct. Both the CBD Special Rates and the property rates increases (23% in 5 years according to Andrew Fraser) are a rort.

          Council’s General Manager even stooped to retrenching staff, but somehow Council can now afford to spend $76mil for a monument to itself. That figure in itself is a fabrication as it is based on insufficient core plans, ignores the land cost, fitout and a plethora of sundry project/transition costs. You can also add the cost of leasing back properties that are currently owned.

    • Quality summary James. Not hard to suspect Council will increase rentals above market to lift sale values. After all it’s not their money.

      As regards the sale price, Council supposedly has undisclosed valuations (not by any local firm or a firm generally recognised) amounting to $20mil. However the GM has convinced the Councillors to permit him to personally sign off on a sale at 10% loss on the valuation without reverting to Council. Ludicrous mismanagement by our Councillors in this respect.

  9. Cut the council some slack.They did superb job with the tender process with the Deep Sea Fishing Club.The first months of operation of the club were comedy gold .It was a job creation scheme every weekend for the police and drug squad.Please keep up the good work.

  10. I really dont understand the criticism of the CHCC Riki.!!Their record is exemplary in management of projects in Coffs Harbour .The seamless re paving job in the Palms Centre still going on!!The driverless bus going to Mutton Island that was good until it ran over someone.Fully landscaped Jetty Park with no shade trees,little parking and still has drainage problems and brown grass and irrigation still not working properly.The buried treasure the concrete steps to the Jetty Beach,please someone come down with a blower and find the lost pyramids.Now please dont remember the mysterious poisoned figs in Harbour Drive and the missing misting machine that stopped misting (aka The Tardis).Dont worry this project will be a piece of piss,trust me

  11. I dont understand the criticism of CHCC Riki ?Their management record has been exemplary.You only have look at the repaving of the Palms centre that is still going on six months later. The driverless bus to Mutton Is that unfortunately ran over someone and disappeared into the ether.The fully landscaped Jetty Park with no shade trees,brown grass with irrigation still not working properly and little parking.The concrete steps to the Jetty beach ,would someone please come down with a blower and recover the “lost pyramids”Who can remember the mysterious dying figs on Harbour Drive and the amazing misting machine in the Palms Centre (aka The Tardis) that stopped misting and surprisingly ended up in the Coffs Harbour cemetery.Dont worry things will be different this project trust me.

  12. John Cleese. You have just put a smile on my dial but I do wonder how you managed to record or recall the exact conversation/discussion on all these issues we had at lunch yesterday. Word for word, complaint by complaint (almost). Were you disguised as that palm tree?

  13. Robynne ,dont tell anyone, clearly I was in disguise, working incognito as a waiter(from Barcelona).Its amazing the things you pick up, especially hiding behind skinny palm trees .Nothing is sacred from the sleuth.

  14. Seriously. I urge you all too go onto Coffs Harbour Ratepayers residents and Business Owners Facebook page. Please read Ex Councillor and Ex Depty Mayor Gary Innes comments. This will give you an indication of how dysfunctional and what type of people get elected too Council. He is a business owner of Chemist Discount Warehouse on Harbour Drive and linked too the yacht club. Make your own opinion .

    • I’ve looked Ron and I have come to the conclusion Gary Innes would not have been the sharpest tool from any shed who ultimately became a City Councillor.

      I think the words ‘former Councillor’ are particularly apt in his case.

      He is showing himself to be an infantile Muppet in my opinion.

  15. James Cooper, what if the buyer is Cex club? bought for future development and getting rent for at least 3 yrs from us do they not have apartments in their plans

    • Jenny Cooper CeX club and CHCC have been bed partners for years and years. It’s history repeating history. The deal has been done. 70 years of ripping people off with poker machine revenue. Its a disgrace.

    • Jenny Cooper, I’m not sure what you mean. There is no buyer as such. I understand that CHCC have tendered for real estate agency services to manage a sale process.
      Any development of the existing buildings into residential offerings would require a huge amount of modification. It would probably be cheaper to demo the buildings, so you’d want to be buying for land value plus any income received. Doesn’t stack up in my mind unless they were bought at a really good price. But there are plenty of people a lot cleverer than me around.

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