The Mortdale RSL Community Club has moved to dispel some of the rumours surrounding its plans for the future development of the club site.
"There are no plans for a 15-storey development," Mortdale RSL Club president Geoff Denyer said.
"The draft Mortdale Masterplan doesn't allow for 15-storeys," Mr Denyer said.
"Under the Masterplan the absolute biggest structure would be seven to nine-storeys for the suburb. The floor space ratio, now 2:1, would be approximately 3:1. That's a 50 per cent increase."
Mr Denyer stressed that the club development is still only in the planning stage.
"We are not property developers," he said.
"We are a young club board, most of us aged between 40 to 60 years old, and we are doing our best to keep the club afloat.
"A lot of the smaller clubs in NSW have gone and with it a lot of the social fabric of communities has gone as well.
"We can't rely on gaming machine revenue into the future. Our plans are about the long-term sustainability of the club. We would be looking at a combination of a commercial and residential development.
"We would keep hold of the commercial component which will give us a stable rental income into the future.
"You need to be able to pay our bills before you open the door. This is the business model that successful clubs will adopt.
"This is about what the club will be in in ten or 20 yeas time, not where the club will be in one or two years time.
"It's about having a successful Mortdale club long after we are gone."
"The Board of Directors of Mortdale RSL Community Club have been working towards a development on the Club site for approximately six years. This is not a new proposal and themembers have been kept well informed of the progress throughout this period.
"Members have been overwhelmingly in support of the Board's intentions at every meeting that has been held, as the current Club building is badly in need of replacement."
Mr Denyer said the Board hopes that a future development on the current site will revitalize this "dead-end" of Mortdale.
"The Board believes that the south-western area of the Mortdale CBD (along Pitt Street) has been allowed to deteriorate badly and is very much a "poor relation" when compared to the main shopping strip along Morts Road. Businesses in that area are thriving and there are no empty commercial spaces.
"Along Pitt Street there are multiple empty shops and tenancies turn over regularly due to declining patronage.
"This, along with COVID restrictions and a Board decision not to prioritize gaming machines as a principal revenue source, has led to declining revenues for Mortdale RSL Community Club.
"The Club supports the Mortdale town centre revitalisation and Council's endeavours in this area.
"We hope that the redevelopment of the Club might be a catalyst for other good outcomes that benefit the community.
"A new Club building that provides a greater focus on family dining and community spaces would be a great contribution to the town centre.
"The simple fact of the matter is that it is inevitable that development will occur on the Club site in the future. The Board of Directors would like it to be for the benefit of the members of Mortdale RSL Community Club.
"This would allow the Club to continue service to the community in remembrance of those ex-service personnel whose memory we have preserved for over 100 years in Mortdale.
"Should the Club cease to exist, the land would almost certainly be purchased by a developer who would build on the site with little or no regard for the community," he said.
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