Group wants de­ci­sion re­con­sid­ered

Yarrawonga Chronicle - - Front Page -

A newly formed group of res­i­dents have come to to­gether in at­tempt to have the de­ci­sion to de­mol­ish the com­mu­nity hall and old kinder­garten build­ings on Orr Street re­scinded.

At Moira Shire Coun­cil’s June or­di­nary meet­ing, coun­cil voted to en­dorse the Yar­ra­wonga Li­brary Steer­ing Com­mit­tees rec­om­men­da­tion to pro­ceed with the de­vel­op­ment op­tion that in­volves the de­mo­li­tion of the com­mu­nity hall and old kinder­garten build­ing to make way for a new li­brary and car park.

Spokesper­son for the com­mu­nity ac­tion group Jeanette Wil­son said they were con­cerned for the pros­per­ity of the town hall if a com­mer­cial kitchen was not guar­an­teed as part of the re­de­vel­op­ment and re­fur­bish­ment of the hall.

“As rate-pay­ers we be­lieve that Moira Shire Coun­cil should re­con­sider and over­turn its res­o­lu­tion at the June meet­ing to pro­ceed with the de­vel­op­ment of a new li­brary at the Yar­ra­wonga Town Hall Precinct as de­scribed in Op­tion A,” Jeanette said.

Ms Wil­son be­lieves the sur­vey it­self could be re­garded as push-polling as Op­tions B and C in­volved lo­cat­ing the li­brary in­side the Town Hall.

“To do so would se­verely com­pro­mise the out­stand­ing ar­chi­tec­tural merit of our 1930‘s Art Deco Hall. There are other op­tions such as to build the new li­brary on the old kinder­garten site which cov­ers a much larger area than the com­mu­nity hall and kitchen, and re­de­velop the lat­ter when funds are avail­able.

“Our ob­jec­tions are not to the build­ing of a new li­brary but to ram­i­fi­ca­tions of the pre­ferred site.

“As stated in Op­tion A, there is no fund­ing avail­able or ear­marked to re­place the fa­cil­i­ties to be de­mol­ished so the town hall could be left with­out a kitchen and sep­a­rate din­ing area, or even with­out space to store chairs, stairs and tres­tles for some time.

“The town hall needs a well equipped kitchen with space to pre­pare and serve sup­pers, lunches or din­ners.

“For ex­am­ple, the Yar­ra­wonga Gala Ball and dance week­end held on the third Sun­day in July at­tracts from 160 to 210 dancers from all over Vic­to­ria and in­ter­state and is feted for its sup­pers and lunch served in the com­mu­nity hall.

“Kitchen fa­cil­i­ties are re­quired for debu­tante balls and other ac­tiv­i­ties. The com­mu­nity hall is used by the Allegro The­atre Com- pany for change rooms, and was used to cater for the re­cent choral fes­ti­val.

“No home owner would bull­doze their kitchen and din­ing room with­out clear fi­nance and plans for re­place­ment.” Stage 2 of Op­tion A refers to the fu­ture re­fur­bish­ment of the Yar­ra­wonga Town Hall and is in­de­pen­dent to li­brary works and de­pen­dant on se­cur­ing fund­ing with an es­ti­mated cost of $1.9 mil­lion. There is no men­tion of a new com­mer­cial kitchen for this stage but even there was the com­mu­nity ac­tion group be­lieves it would be dif­fi­cult to in­clude.

“There are nei­ther ar­chi­tec­tural plans nor struc­tural en­gi­neer­ing com­pu­ta­tions to show the fea­si­bil­ity of lo­cat­ing a kitchen on the ground floor of the hall with easy ac­cess to hall,” Ms Wil­son said.

“The elec­tri­cals, a stair­case and the men’s toi­lets are be­tween the cur­rent shire ser­vice cen­ter and the au­di­to­rium, and the clock tower rises above the front por­tion of the build­ing. On the other side there is the other stair­case, a store room and the ladies toi­let be­tween the two meet­ing rooms and the au­di­to­rium, all with thick walls.

“The costs would be con­sid­er­able and my fear is that once the com­mu­nity hall and kitch- en are gone, stage two will be put on the back burner. The coun­cil mo­tion is quite clear that there is no fund­ing for stage two.

“Also, a kitchen within the main hall build­ing would not solve the is­sue of hav­ing a sec­ond large space to serve food or for smaller func­tions.”

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