Revised plans for the Regent Theatre development will be on public exhibition from this week.
Mid-Western Regional Council has advised the developer has received an update to the application – to development the historical Church Street building into a hotel and function centre.
A Council spokesperson explained the changes were ‘in response to the Council’s Further Information Request’.
The amended plans will be notified to neighbours, advertised in the Mudgee Guardian on Friday, February 16 and made publicly available on Council’s website at midwestern.nsw.gov.au from Friday.
Simone Sheridan, founder of the Revive the Regent Facebook group, wrote a letter to Council expressing her concerns after finding out about the DA change on social media.
“I’m glad they [Council] have shared when the plans will be made public, we just want to learn things as they happen,” Simone said.
Members of Revive the Regent uncovered the changes on a newly created Facebook group titled ‘The Regent Theatre Refurbishment’.
“We’re disappointed to learn about the changes online, rather than directly via Council or via Public Notice,” she said.
“We’re all really invested now, we have a lot of people following this very closely, so we were very shocked to see that there have been changes and they were published online.
“But when you go to Council’s website, the DA is still the same as the original proposal.”
The information on The Regent Theatre Refurbishment page indicates the proposal will be reduced from 84-rooms to 64-rooms and from 33 car spaces up to 74 car spaces, Simone explained.
“Now that there have been obvious changes, they are obviously in response to our group being quite vocal,” she said.
“I feel it’s actually really exciting, it means that our campaign has made some traction and the developer has seen that the community doesn’t want the DA that was lodged in September.”
The art-deco building was opened in 1935 and last used as a theatre in 2009, but didn’t screen movies for several years prior to that.
The Revive the Regent group has maintained the building should be used as a community space, with Simone previously telling the Mudgee Guardian, she “couldn’t bare the thought of history and heritage of the theatre being lost and that was what had motivated her to start the movement.”
Due to the development application changes, the proposal will not be considered by Council at the February meeting as previously planned.
The amended plans will be reviewed by Council’s planning department as part of the development assessment process and a report will be provided to Council for determination at a future Council meeting.
“We have two weeks to read the changes and do it all again,” Simone said.
“We’re not giving up.”