Arts cen­tre mile­stone

The Weekly Advertiser Horsham - - News -

Ararat Ru­ral City Coun­cil’s vi­sion for a ma­jor cen­tre for the arts is a step closer to be­ing re­alised, with the project reach­ing an­other ma­jor mile­stone.

Work­ers put pre-cast con­crete pan­els into place early last week to mark the new gallery and gallery store spa­ces within the re­de­vel­oped arts precinct.

Ararat Ru­ral City Coun­cil Mayor Paul Hooper said with the pan­els in place, it was pos­si­ble to get a sense of how the new spa­ces would ul­ti­mately look.

“To date, there has been a lot of be­hind-thescenes work at the site, with par­tial de­mo­li­tion and un­der­ground works hap­pen­ing,” he said.

“It’s re­ally ex­cit­ing to see the build­ing’s exterior is now tak­ing shape.”

Coun­cil­lors and project con­trol group mem­bers toured the con­struc­tion site ear­lier this month.

Cr Hooper said the tour pro­vided an op­por­tu­nity to in­spect the his­toric town hall and per­form­ing arts cen­tre mid-way through the 18-month con­struc­tion project.

When com­plete in au­tumn 2018, the re­vamped arts precinct will in­clude a larger art gallery, an im­proved per­form­ing arts cen­tre foyer, box of­fice and bar area, new café, more stor­age and a green room.

Cr Hooper said the project ar­chi­tect Wil­liams­boag had drawn on com­mu­nity in­put over­laid with ar­chi­tec­tural draw­ings dat­ing back as far as 1895.

“This is one of the re­gion’s most recog­nis­able build­ings and while we have an eye to how it will be used into the fu­ture, we have been very care­ful to re­spect its his­tory,” he said.

The Ararat Arts Precinct rede­vel­op­ment has been funded via a part­ner­ship be­tween the State Govern­ment, $5.2-mil­lion, the Fed­eral Govern­ment’s Na­tional Stronger Re­gions Fund, $945,000, the re­gional com­mu­nity, $100,000, and Ararat Ru­ral City Coun­cil.

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