Downsized development likely for Port Fairy wharf precinct

A VACANT block on Port Fairy’s waterfront worth millions could finally be developed after years of wrangling and disputes. 

A site on Port Fairy’s wharf that once housed a flour mill and later an aquarium is a step closer to development.

A site on Port Fairy’s wharf that once housed a flour mill and later an aquarium is a step closer to development.

The spot fronting the wharf and King George Square sits at the heart of the Moyne River tourism precinct and once housed an aquarium. The property was sold to a consortium in June last year and a proposal for seven three-bedroom units on the site has been lodged with Moyne Shire, which won’t vote on the plans until after May 8.

A planning report put to council says while the new development will be “similar” to previous attempts, there are “a significant reduction in the number of accommodation units proposed in the application”. 

Previous owners held a permit to construct up to 16 units on the property, despite a challenge in the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT).

Developer Blair Robertson told The Standard that permit was still active, however, he had downsized the blueprints after studying objections made during the tribunal hearings. 

“When we acquired the property I went back through the VCAT hearings and designed a new project around the main objections,” Mr Robertson said.

“We wanted to develop something the town would like.” 

Parts of the site are heritage listed.

The original building was a flour mill and warehouse when it first opened in 1849. A second storey was added to the building in the 1960s and it operated as an aquarium for 20 years. 

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