Local business owners have expressed a positive outlook about a proposal for a multi-million-dollar apartment complex in the CBD, despite raising some short term concerns.
A development application has been lodged with Wagga City Council for a 16 residential apartment complex with ground floor commercial space on 12-16 Blake Street.
The complex is estimated to cost over $10 million and would fill a block that has been vacant for several years.
The Pot 'n' Kettle Coffee House owner Ryan Dent said he would not want to "stand in the way of progress" but hoped small businesses will be taken into consideration.
"The long term aspect would be beneficial for the area, because it sounds like there will be more parking and the streetscape changing into a more positive aesthetic, which would be good," Mr Dent said.
"While we see it as a good thing and we welcome progress in the street, there are a few concerns about what impact it might have on our business.
"The immediate concern is the construction, as the majority of our seating and our bread and butter is outside in the courtyard, which would be affected by the noise and dust.
"We recognise that would impact greatly on people wanting to sit outside, which is a concern for the financial side of the business," he said.
Mr Dent raised another concern that the building's height would create a "concrete jungle" and interfere with their sunlight.
"Being a five-storey development, the shade might take away our sunlight which creates an ambiance in our courtyard," he said.
"There's a private dwelling out the back and I've lived there before and the building could dwarf the dwelling and block light and views.
"I'm looking forward to having a discussion with the developer to ensure the needs of local businesses are met as we don't want our six years of hard work to be affected."
Mr Dent welcomed more parking for the street but admitted the vacant block in the meantime has been "quite beneficial" car parking spaces for workers and customers.
Owner of Riverina Scooters and Mobility Michael Standley welcomed the development, which would wipe the street's "eyesore".
"If it's retail with residential above, I totally support the development; it's much better than an eyesore and empty block of land," Mr Standley said.
"I think apartment living in Central is fantastic and Wagga needs more developments and apartment living, like The Mill Residence."
Mr Standley took over the 18-year-old business about a year ago and said it is time the empty block full of "dust and rubbish" is cleared.
"There's timed parking out the front anyway and probably the only thing in going forward, would be to change the all day parking on the opposite side of the road to timed parking as well.
"Overall, I'm very positive and it would be great to see a plan for the site."
The Daily Advertiser contacted Norman Braines Auto Electrics but they denied to comment due to not being aware of details for the proposed development.
The development was lodged by Pascoe Construction and is being designed by Wodonga-based JWP Architects.
Kerry Pascoe from Pascoe Construction said while the complex includes private parking for the residents, a Voluntary Planning Agreement has been lodged for an additional 21 car parking spaces on Blake Street.
"Hoping to change the street to angled parking instead of parallel and it would clean up the street and traffic islands would be inserted either end to feed the traffic in a lot safer," Cr Pascoe said.
"The street would also include alfresco areas that are paved and landscaped, which would be to the likes of the coffee shop."
Cr Pascoe said the complex was encouraging higher density in the CBD and meeting the needs of the future population.
"If we are headed for a population of 100,000, we need to do more with regards to the central area of the city and encourage development that intensifies the density," he said.
"Instead of having an urban sprawl that makes our footprint bigger and puts a strain on infrastructure.
"In the CBD there is substantial amount of infrastructure, which might only need to be updated."
Cr Pascoe said higher density living in Central will "enhance the cosmopolitan" lifestyle.
"It would help these businesses, like coffee shops and in hospitality because it would create a good atmosphere," he said.