Marrickville library saved from sale to property developer

17 March 2015

The Marrickville Greens have welcomed the vote by Marrickville Council tonight to reject the proposed sale of the planned Marrickville library site to a foreign property developer for $52 million dollars.

Maxma Developments Pty Ltd owned and controlled by sole shareholder and Director Xianhon Ma approached Marrickville Council to buy the site of the old Marrickville Hospital, which is currently undergoing an expression of interest process for construction of a new library, community hub and park.

The offer to buy the site was an unsolicited offer outside the current process.

In a letter to council Xianhon Ma’s lawyer Jeffrey Wong  said “Director and sole shareholder Xianhong Ma had been actively engaging in property development in Foshan, China for years”. The letter also claims that Xianhon Ma had constructed museums for movie stars Bruce Lee and Jackie Chan.

“But councils own due diligence revealed that Maxma Developments Pty Ltd was incorporated on 5 May 2014 and has only $100 in paid up capital. No security for the proposed transaction was offered by this entity apart from a 10% deposit” revealed Clr Leary.

The developer’s offer shows the developer planned to construct a 4 star hotel with 110 rooms, 400 residential units, an exhibition centre and commercial premises totalling 2000 square metres.

Up until this offer was received Marrickville council was involved in an expression of interest process for the construction of a library and community hub, 1200  square metres of park and residential and commercial development on the balance of the site including a minimum of 4% affordable housing.

“Council has never considered flogging off the entire site until this developer came along and if the developers offer had been accepted it would have derailed the process for the new library” commented Greens Councillor David Leary who succesffuly moved that confidential information relating to the project be released to the public at last nights meeting.

“The Old Marrickville hospital site has always been earmarked for use by the community for construction of a new library, community hub and a park. This was why Marrickville Council bought the site from the State government. Now that this deal has been rejected Council should get on with building these important community facilities without delay” said Councillor Leary.

Contact: Cr David Leary 0409 421 323

For more background and comments from Greens candidate for Summer Hill, Clr Max Phillips, see Greens Media Release from 15 March ‘Council should reject developer’s offer and stick with building a new library and new park’

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