Shellharbour City Hub's funding concerns

Shellharbour City Council is expected to lodge a development application for its $57 million Shellharbour City Hub project in coming days, but concerns have been raised that just one of five properties to be sold to help fund the project has changed hands.

The council aims to get $35 million from the sale of assets to put towards building the hub.

Last year, Shellharbour councillors agreed to sell 1.38 hectares of land on Pioneer Drive, Oak Flats, to Transport for NSW for $1.58 million for a commuter car park.

Other properties earmarked for sale to fund the hub are the council's administration building, known as Lamerton House, and the parcel of land beside it known as Lot 3000, the former council chambers and administration centre in Warilla and a 42.25-hectare site which sits between the western edge of Albion Park and Tullimbar Village, which has development approval for 284 housing lots and three super lots.

Cr Peter Moran said people didn't start building a house if they didn't have finance and as far as finance for the hub was concerned there was no certainty.

"We don't know if we will end up with a $10 million loan or even a $20 million loan," he said.

Cr Kellie Marsh said the council had put "the cart before the horse" and was going through a process that would not happen in the private sector.

Shellharbour City Council general manager Michael Willis said in relation to the Tullimbar property a potential sale was "moving towards a finality" and he was hopeful an announcement would be made on that property in the next couple of weeks.

"We have had some strong expressions of interests on the Warilla chambers which are currently being evaluated and will be reported back to the council in due course."

Mr Willis said the sale of Lamerton House was being deliberately left to the end of the process.

Last month a range of financial scenarios presented to the council indicated Lamerton House was expected to bring in a figure of around $18 million, but Mr Willis said the council would not know what it would get for Lamerton House "until someone promises to hand us a cheque ... the market makes its own determination".

Meantime, Cr Marsh said another public meeting to discuss the City Hub was being planned for Albion Park next month.

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