Medowie's time is here: Housing, commercial, education and community developments underway

NEW ESTATE: Vivacity Property marketing director Janine Spencer at the Tallowood housing development site on Medowie Road. It is one of five current Medowie housing developments. Picture: Charlie Elias
NEW ESTATE: Vivacity Property marketing director Janine Spencer at the Tallowood housing development site on Medowie Road. It is one of five current Medowie housing developments. Picture: Charlie Elias

It was central ward councillor and Medowie resident Chris Doohan who, in November 2018, declared "it's our time".

The statement was made while debating the merits of a community club for Medowie.

Fifteen months later and the deputy mayor's vision is becoming a reality, with housing, commercial, education and community developments springing up across the township.

Among the many housing estates expected to commence, or already under construction, are The Bower, The Gardens, Blueheath, Tall Trees and Tallowood.

They are are in addition to the almost-completed Medowie community club, the commencement to the build of the new catholic school on Medowie Road and approvals for commercial sites in the town centre.

Port Stephens central ward Chris Doohan with Medowie Sports and Community Club president Craig Baumann in front of the $6.5 million facility.

Port Stephens central ward Chris Doohan with Medowie Sports and Community Club president Craig Baumann in front of the $6.5 million facility.

Following a 12-month delay and a change of ownership, construction on the long-awaited $120 million Tallowood housing estate is scheduled to start next month.

Approved by Port Stephens Council two years ago, Tallowood Lifestyle Resort was billed by developer Civitas Lifestyle as a "luxury development for over 50s", with construction due to begin in February 2019 through Valley Homes and Skelcon Constructions.

Despite the promises, the 20-hectare site stood idle leaving investors nervous before a change in ownership was negotiated last December with Vivacity Property taking over.

Vivacity Property marketing director Janine Spencer said that stage one, comprising 42 homes and a $6 million clubhouse with a range of community facilities, was on track for a March 2020 start.

"Vivacity is a relative new company with members who are passionate about developing and operating lifestyle communities that provide safe, friendly and interactive living for independent over 55s in highly desirable retirement locations," she said.

Ms Spencer said that a 'meet and greet' presentation held at Pacific Dunes Greenhouse on January 17 to introduce the new owners to potential investors was an icebreaker.

"The idea behind the presentation was to display on a show of trust and confidence to those interested in purchasing a property ... and it was successful. We had excellent feedback and will now forge ahead with the development," she said.

The first stage of homes will be constructed by Valley Homes. Director Craig Baumann said that Medowie's first overs 50s gated development was much needed for those homeowners looking to downsize.

"Tallowood presents as a safe community within walking distance of the Medowie shopping centre, while providing a huge boost for the economy and jobs for locals," he said.

Included in the first stage is the clubhouse featuring a gym, sauna, 20m indoor lap pool, consulting rooms for GP and specialist visits, commercial kitchen, bar and billiards room, plus an outdoor heated pool, bowling green and tennis court.

Ms Spencer said that the new owners had retained many of the home features the engineered timber flooring, ducted air, solar electrical, auto garage doors, covered alfresco and fully fence, pet friendly yards, with prices from $449,000.

"Between 80-90 per cent of buyers come from the Port Stephens and surrounding region, with many people saying they want to stay in the community they have lived in for some time and close to family and friends," she said.

Less than one kilometre north on Medowie Road is Tall Trees estate, a 39-lot Torrens Title subdivision approved by council last May.

Darren Sampson, one of five Port Stephens families behind the $20 million housing project, said that "we look forward to delivering a boutique development" on the 5.5 hectare lot.

The Bower is one of three McCloy Group housing estates going up in Medowie, alongside The Gardens and Blueheath.

The Bower is one of three McCloy Group housing estates going up in Medowie, alongside The Gardens and Blueheath.

Another huge investor in Medowie's housing growth is the McCloy Group, who have released The Bower, The Gardens and Blueheath.

The Bower offers an estimated 405 home sites ranging from approximately 500 square metres to 5000 square metres across 57 hectares, while The Gardens has council DA approval for a boutique community for 213 home sites, with an average size of 550 square metres across the 20 hectare parcel of land.

The Gardens, on Medowie Road, is due to commence construction this month with stage one planned for release mid-year 2020.

Blueheath, situated in the McCloy's Bower estate, will comprise 110 independent living units.

"This is a full service retirement village providing home and garden maintenance for residents, plus community facilities including large dining and lounge areas, an indoor swimming pool, gymnasium, a consulting room for visiting doctors, a woodwork shed and bowling green," a spokesperson said.

Cr Chris Doohan in front of the block of land fronting Medowie Road which has been approved for a commercial development. The house is to be demolished.

Cr Chris Doohan in front of the block of land fronting Medowie Road which has been approved for a commercial development. The house is to be demolished.

On the commercial front, Port Stephens councillors approved in December a new development off Medowie Road featuring a service, station, mechanic and convenience store plus food outlet.

A development application for a Medowie McDonald's has also been lodged with Port Stephens Council.

Construction of the long-awaited $6.5 million Medowie Community Club is complete and expected to be in operation in the coming months.

Cr Doohan said that all developments had been well scrutinised and would be a 'terrific addition' to the town.

"With development naturally comes jobs. Employment in Medowie is very hard to come by, but with this growth the amount of opportunity is increased exponentially. The new Catholic High School is one of these opportunities."

He said as a result there was now interest in more commercial development in the town centre that would add a sense of fulfilment and completion to what has been a very lacking area for many years.

"The important thing however, is to ensure planning is carefully done and adhered to. It is critical that careful planning has buy-in from the community as well as the planning staff," Cr Doohan said.

"With growth comes the requirement for new and improved infrastructure. Club Medowie is only a matter of weeks from opening, and next on the agenda is a new amenities block at Boyd Oval."

Central ward councillor Sarah Smith added: "This is an exciting time for the future of Medowie. The increase in residents will mean a need for increased services and I would certainly advocate for this."

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