ERA was engaged by Lake Frederick Inn Pty Ltd to seek a rezoning and development application for a proposed whisky distillery at 99 High Street, Oatlands. The project sought to revitalise Oatlands by delivering a first-class visitor destination, providing for a seamless and enhanced visitor experience incorporating a mill and distillery complex on adjoining sites.

Although considered a prime location, the site’s zoning prohibited the resource processing use required to operate a distillery. As a result, ERA initially undertook an amendment to the planning scheme to permit resource processing use on the site. To account for the heritage significance of the site, a separate development application was also undertaken to enable the necessary approvals from the Tasmanian Heritage Council. Finally, ERA secured approval for an associated bond store on a nearby site, which required ERA to develop a Bushfire Hazard Management Plan and Emergency Management Plan.

Both the rezoning and development applications involved substantial coordination by ERA with the project team, Council, Tasmanian Planning Commission, Department of Primary Industries, Parks, Water and Environment, Tasmanian Heritage Council and the Tasmania Fire Service. ERA led an iterative planning and design process, which culminated in the necessary approvals being granted.

The Callington Mill Distillery was granted planning approval in 2018, a building permit in 2019, and is currently under construction. Soon, visitors will be able to appreciate the history of the mill and heritage buildings, immerse themselves in the heart of Oatlands, and sample some fine Tasmanian produced whisky.