Growth forces offices out of CBD

THE expanding Bundaberg population is forcing professional offices away from the CBD and into the suburbs.

Over the past few months a number of development applications to change residential houses into commercial offices have been received by Bundaberg Regional Council.

Last week, two applications were made for a similar transformation.

Property owner John Shepphard recently made an application for his residential block in Burrum Street to be transformed into professional offices, with a caretaker's residence on the same block.

“I think the middle of town is not conducive to professional office type properties,” he said.

“I think people who work in offices prefer to be outside of the CBD a little where the office is newer and you stand out a little more.

“It's better to be one among a number of homes rather than one office in 20.”

Mr Sheppard's plan will move a residential house to the corner of the block to make way for a building which will have two offices.

The second application will remove a Barolin Street house to make way for a legal office containing four conference rooms and a general administration area.

The building will also have a mezzanine level for an additional conference room.

Bundaberg Regional councillor and planning and development spokesperson Ross Sommerfeld said he did not think the move to professional offices in residential areas was a growing trend.

“I don't believe it's a spike out of the ordinary but there have been quite a few of these recently. Obviously a lot of people are relocating and I think there are situations where people are trying to get out of the CBD area so they can have more parking and newer facilities,” he said.

“We try and encourage developments which will create new jobs and if they are close to the CBD in new offices that is just a bonus.”

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