OLD AND NEW: Some readers praised the council for instigating change while others are more reserved on the perceived benefits.
OLD AND NEW: Some readers praised the council for instigating change while others are more reserved on the perceived benefits. Brian Cassidy

Locals divided on radical plan to rebuild Bundy CBD

THE community has responded with mixed reactions upon news that are epic plans in the pipeline for Bundy's CBD.

On Saturday, the NewsMail revealed that Bundaberg Regional Council was planning a major overhaul of the CBD.

Planning recommendations for the rebuild include the inclusion of a university in the CBD, a new hospital in the city heart and the closure of some roads.

Among those who were excited by the news was Andy Mark.

"The CBD desperately needs to move into the 21st Century, it's depressing ... it needs to reflect the vibrancy and beauty of our region," he said.

"Let's repaint the whale mural too."

Josh Watson agreed.

"So good to see the council being optimistic and forward thinking for the future of Bundaberg," he said.

However, many expressed various reasons as to why they thought the major overhaul would be detrimental, or just made little sense.

Leanne Donaldson weighed in on the issue, labelling the CBD hospital plan "pie in the sky".

"After all, it's the State Government that will make the decision about a new hospital location by consulting with stakeholders, something this council seems to have forgotten how to do," she said.

Jon Carman expressed his concern over traffic.

"I would suggest that having a Uni campus and a major hospital in a CBD which already has a congestion and parking issue... is nothing short of narrow-minded stupidity," he said.

"Any new facility in the areas of health and education must have ease of traffic access, good parking and be in an area not compromised by future flood events.

"The current racecourse or the area in which ATW has its soccer and Rugby League fields is much more suitable than the CBD."

Denise Kahler drew comparisons with other cities that had revamped their city centres.

"Will end up like Ipswich, where they destroyed all the beautiful old buildings and replaced them with a concrete monstrosity," she said.

Tomas O'Malley said he didn't entirely agree with the whole plan, but congratulated the council for its vision.

"The key concern is ensuring we actually get the new hospital," he said.

"Frankly, the location is of secondary concern, provided it meets basic requirements of good accessibility, flood-free etc.

"That said, good on the Council for putting forward an ambitious agenda for CBD revitalisation.

"I don't necessarily agree with all the specifics, but it's good to finally see some big picture thinking."

A poll on the NewsMail website shows people are almost evenly split on the new CBD plan.

While 47 per cent say they are excited for it, 43 per cent say they are against changing the CBD.

Eight per cent are undecided.

Vote on the poll and read the original story at https://bit.ly/2OOXSbW.



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