The development of a major lifestyle and indoor sports park for the community will also provide a pioneering way for a community services organisation to decrease its reliance upon the public purse.
As a not for profit organisation operating in community and disability services sector since 1981, Allambi Care recognised the increased pressure of the sector on government funding and has been working on a strategic pathway to establishing a practical, logical and responsible way to be self-sustaining.
As part of this strategy, Allambi purchased three parcels of land and associated buildings on Macquarie Road, Warners Bay in Lake Macquarie and last month submitted a Development Application for a $20 million indoor recreation facility.
The three sites at 236, 246 and 250 Macquarie Road are zoned B7 and planned to include a destination facility that will add value to the area’s current large format indoor recreation, entertainment, bulky goods, and retail spaces.
Importantly, it is also designed to advance creative and innovative approaches to business, job creation, accessibility, the expansion of high-performance sports infrastructure as well as providing accessible and entertaining options for the local community.
The development plans to include lifestyle sports facilities such as an Olympic standard indoor skatepark, BMX precinct and wave pool.
The site will also include a restaurant and café zone, accommodationfor up to 84 beds for activities including holiday camps for kids.
The centre is expected to inject about $41 million annually into the local community.
Allambi CEO, Simon Walsh said that extensive research, exploration and assessments about the potential use for 30,000 square metre site have been undertaken over the past few years.
“The ultimate goal is to create a community asset that is complementary to the Warners Bay precinct,the City of Lake Macquarie and the wider Hunter region,” he said.
“We have designed the place to be a destination and visitor economy asset while providing a financially responsible business model that we anticipate will decrease the reliance of public money to support the growing need of our community.”
The site will be called Rushfields and will be a stand alone commercial entity that will provide all profits directly back to Allambi as the site owner.
Allambi Project Lead, Steve Graham said that Rushfields was a carefully planned development.
“We are using the resources and skills of a project team that specialises in people centred approaches to planning, design and management of spaces,” Steve said.
“This is not an out of the box project. It includes new and innovative approaches not just to the physicality of the space but also in its capital raising and ongoing financial management.
“We have been working with specialists with connections into major international brands that will bring investment into the project on an ongoing basis that will also provide experience, products and equipment not currently available in Australia.”
The Development Application has been be lodged with Lake Macquarie City Council.
Lake Macquarie Mayor Cr Kay Fraser said that Council welcomed Allambi Care’s development application.
“Plans for this new facility look incredible. Allambi Care are one of our largest employers in Lake Macquarie and provide essential services for our community,” Kay said.
“This will no doubt add to our growing top-class recreation facilities in Lake Macquarie and provide benefit for our community for years to come.”
IMAGE | Artist impression of the new Rushfields development