Rail land back on market

The Millicent rail lands alongside Towers Road and Railway Terrace are back on the open market, according to a local real estate agent.

The area had previously been listed as “under offer” earlier this year.

As a result, rumours had swept Millicent in recent months that prominent South East building company Empak would be the new owner.

However, management of this company has told The SE Voice that no such deal was completed.

“We will not be purchasing the Millicent rail lands,” Empak spokesman Heath Mitchell said.

“Confidentiality precludes me saying any more.”

Empak had its origins in Millicent in the post-war years under the late Norm Mitchell and is now headquartered in Mount Gambier.

The parcel of vacant land measuring 5.25 hectares (12 acres) in the centre of Millicent was put on the open market over three years ago after being in the ownership of the state and colonial governments since the 1870s.

According to a draft consultant’s report commissioned by Wattle Range Council and currently in the public consultation phase, there are soil contamination issues in the Millicent rail lands but also areas suitable for residential development.

“This development is considered to be beneficial in order to provide modern housing close to the centre of Millicent,” stated consultants Holmes Dyer.

The rail lands include a telecommunications tower and the 1920s-era railway station and both structures are subject to leases.

The rail lands adjoin other State Government land which is also expected to come onto the open market this year after Wattle Range Council removed encumbrances in 2021.

For much of the past three decades since the cessation of freight train services to Millicent, there have been talks between the State Government and local government officials about the future of the vacant Millicent land and its potential for housing or other development.

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