Cultural cash coup
Two cultural developments in the City of Karratha look set to go ahead, with the Federal Government announcing it will pour millions of dollars into projects in Karratha and Roebourne.
The $56 million Karratha Arts and Community Precinct received $10 million under the latest round of the National Stronger Regions Fund, announced on Monday.
Construction is expected to begin in mid-2016, pending funding from other partners.
Yindjibarndi Aboriginal Corporation received $2 million under the same fund towards the $6 million restoration of the Victoria Hotel in Roebourne as a community hub.
City of Karratha Mayor Peter Long said the council was ecstatic to secure funds from the NSRF.
“There is clearly a need for an indoor theatre, not just in Karratha but in the Pilbara as a whole,” he said. “This was a very competitive funding round, so to be successful is a great achievement and shows the Federal Government understands the need for these facilities in this region.
“This is a great vote of confidence in our vision for the City of Karratha and our focus will now move to locking in State Government and corporate funding to make this project a reality.”
The City is still hoping to secure $14 million in funding from Royalties for Regions, $1 million from Lotterywest and $9 million from industry for the arts precinct.
Federal MP Melissa Price said both projects would be a “massive” boost for the Pilbara.
“(The Arts and Community Precinct) will provide iconic, contemporary, cultural and learning facilities and consists of a state-of-theart library, multi-functional theatre, modern outdoor amphitheatre and a war memorial,” she said.
“The library will include a professions research and education development zone, office space and personalised visitor centre services integrated into the layout.
“The theatre and associated spaces feature a grand open foyer proving opportunities for showcasing local and Aboriginal art and local history exhibitions, and a stunning rooftop terrace space for cinema and outdoor events.”
Last year, YAC chief executive Michael Woodley said the corporation would look to reopen the historic Victoria Hotel, which closed in 2005, as an accommodation, cafe and office space.
Mr Woodley envisaged the former pub as a “vibrant meeting place for the community”.