The NSW Government has delivered on its commitment to keep the Department of Planning, Industry and Environment’s regional headquarters in Orange, with the completion of the Ian Armstrong Building in Orange.

Minister for Water, Property and Housing Melinda Pavey today announced the building would be named after former leader of the National Party and Deputy Premier Ian Armstrong OBE, the pioneer of the decentralisation policy in NSW.

“Ian Armstrong led the charge to relocate almost 500 departmental employees in 1988 – the biggest and most successful single departmental relocation in Australian history, bringing public servants closer to the people they serve,” Mrs Pavey said.

“At the time, the state was facing significant economic headwinds. Following the move the city’s unemployment rate stabilised to 4 per cent below the national average during those recession years and $20 million was pumped into the local economy.

“This building is a fitting tribute to the father of decentralisation, today accommodating 800 public sector employees, providing a long-term boost for the regional economy.”

National Party Upper House MP Sam Farraway, said the new headquarters signaled a major investment in the growth and development of the region.

“This new regional hub provides certainty to staff and the community, underpinning the Government’s commitment to support job growth in regional centres,” Mr Farraway said.

“Hundreds of public service employees from the departments of Primary Industries, Planning Industry and Environment, Regional NSW, Premier & Cabinet and Education will enjoy a new workspace that will provide a modern and inspiring work environment, enabling them to deliver quality services for the people of NSW.” 

The new modern, three-storey building boasts environmental credentials, including solar panels and electric car recharge stations. It has been designed and built to 5-Star NABERS Energy, 4-Star NABERS Water and 5-Star Greenstar ratings, which will reduce operating costs and the building’s impact on the local environment.

Staff are expected to move into the building in October.