Development boom continues
Cessnock City Council blew forecasted development and building approval figures for 2016/17 out of the water, which was highlighted in a performance report at Wednesday’s meeting.
The Hunter Regional Plan outlined Cessnock City Council will have a projected increase in dwelling approvals of 6,350 between 2016 and 2036, which averages out to be 318 applications per year.
Council exceeded this figure by a whopping 44% in the 2016/17 financial year by approving approximately 459 residential buildings across the region.
With this, the total number of DAs determined (excluding s96) was up 7.7%, reaching 784 and the total value of Council’s DAs was $207,097,876, an increase of 23% on the 2015/16 financial year. Complying development value for the same period was another $61 million on top of this.
This boom is reflective of an increase in housing activity across the region, in particular the growth occurring in greenfield Urban Release Areas, including Huntlee and Cliftleigh.
Council staff have also been working hard to improve both processes and timeframes when it comes to building approvals and in 2016/17, the average processing time was 52 days, yet the median time was just 28 days.
Cessnock City Mayor, Councillor Bob Pynsent, said these figures are a combination of our reputation as a thriving, attractive and welcoming place to live, along with the dedication and fantastic work of Council staff.
“We are going through a period of rapid growth and our staff are committed to working closely with key stakeholders to continuously improve processes to ensure we are meeting increased demand effectively and efficiently.”
“I recently went out to Huntlee and the progress of this site from when development started to now is just incredible.”
“I will continue to promote and support the growth of our wonderful region and look forward to welcoming newcomers to Cessnock City,” added Cr Pynsent.
Cessnock City Council will continue to strive for excellence in its development assessment performance and processing times in the 2017/18 financial year.