COUNCIL has admitted it was “a mistake” not to go ahead with a cost estimate and design for a multi-million dollar redevelopment of the Wangaratta Saleyards.
In a penny saving move in February, Rural City of Wangaratta councillors voted 4-3 to baulk at asking a consultant to develop design plans for a roof and soft flooring at the yards.
Councillor Paul O’Brien, one of the four who voted against the costing and design approach, told the Wangaratta Chronicle yesterday “in hindsight it was a mistake” to call for expressions of interest (EOI) without having any plans in hand.
But he did defend the move by saying it had potential to save money in getting the design and construction done by the one contractor.
Council, behind closed doors on Tuesday night, agreed to go ahead with the more feasible approach after the two EOIs received fell short of expectations.
It has also today advertised for “suitably experienced and qualified design engineers” to provide the design which could cost up to $150,000.
“The EOI approach didn’t work, but we wanted to try and test it out to achieve cost savings, as Yea Saleyards did with their upgrade,” Cr O’Brien said.