Green light for a new supermarket in Echuca west

By Riverine Herald

CAMPASPE Shire Council plans to amend its planning scheme to allow the Echuca west supermarket to go ahead.

The application, first submitted in 2015, is expected to offer a high quality supermarket and ‘‘will not detract from nor be detrimental to the Echuca CBD and shopping precinct’’, according to a council report.

‘‘The supermarket will meet the community’s needs for retail and provide for convenient and safe shopping, in an area which is well connected to major roads and the surrounding residential environment,’’ the report, presented to councillors in November, said.

‘‘The proposed neighbourhood centre will contribute to employment growth and ensure the community is provided with a range of goods and services.

‘‘It will not reduce the primary role of Echuca CBD as it is proposed to be limited to a supermarket and a small number of shops which is also consistent with what was identified in the Echuca Commercial Strategy 2017.’’

The supermarket’s application was submitted to council on March 12, 2015 for a combined amendment and planning permit application for a large supermarket at 35-41 Murray Valley Hwy, Echuca.

That was after July, 2012 when the planning minister proposed a series of new and reformed planning zones to replace the then five business zones which were consolidated into two new commercial zones.

The application was agreed to be put on hold until council had progressed the commercial strategy for Echuca which was council adopted on May 17, 2017 and identified the site was suitable for the Echuca West Neighbourhood Centre.

The supermarket will be 3200 square metres with a future expansion zone of 3500 and include an additional 482 square metres for adjoining shops.

The development is of a ‘‘contemporary architectural design’’ and will include aluminium battens with a timber appearance, as well as 194 car parking spaces and 13 bicycle spots.

Cr Neil Pankhurst spoke in support of the recommendation at the meeting.

‘‘This is seeking to amend our planning scheme but also includes a planning application ... we ended up with land that was zoned that didn’t align with the strategic intent,’’ he said.

‘‘I think it’s a worthwhile development and an appropriate amendment to the planning scheme.’’