Hall plan pro­gressed

Coun­cil ap­points ar­chi­tect to help de­velop con­cept

Southern Riverina news - - NEWS -

Ber­ri­gan Shire Coun­cil is press­ing on with plans for the Finley School of Arts precinct re­de­vel­op­ment.

At Septem­ber’s meet­ing, coun­cil ap­pointed an ar­chi­tect to de­velop the con­cept plans — which were adopted by coun­cil in July — into a de­tailed set of plans to get de­vel­op­ment con­sent and then go to ten­der.

The plans will keep the War Me­mo­rial Hall but sep­a­rate the two halls (Me­mo­rial Hall and School of Arts) phys­i­cally and op­er­a­tionally.

The cost of the project is es­ti­mated to be $480,000, sub­ject to the re­ceipt of a $200,000 grant.

Although at this stage it will not be de­mol­ished as orig­i­nally planned, Mayor Matt Han­nan said the fu­ture of the Me­mo­rial Hall is in the hands of the com­mu­nity.

He said coun­cil will as­sess its us­age over the next three years be­fore mak­ing any de­ci­sions about its fu­ture, be it up­grad­ing, re­mov­ing it or some­thing else en­tirely.

‘‘Coun­cil has ac­cepted the chal­lenge of the com­mu­nity in agree­ing to re­tain the War Me­mo­rial Hall for three years to see if sus­tain­able use can be demon­strated in the medium term,’’ Cr Han­nan said.

“The Finley War Me­mo­rial Hall’s fu­ture is, and will al­ways be, de­ter­mined by the com­mu­nity’s use of the fa­cil­ity,” he said.

He said coun­cil is com­mit­ted to pro­tect­ing and re­fur­bish­ing the her­itage listed School of Arts Hall over the next 12 months.

‘‘Coun­cil lis­tened to the com­mu­nity and were mind­ful of the need to im­prove the ameni­ties, ac­cess and ren­o­vate the kitchen, whilst leav­ing the War Me­mo­rial Hall in place,’’ Cr Han­nan said.

“Un­der­stand­ing that not all are go­ing to agree with these plans, the com­mu­nity will get an up­graded and ac­ces­si­ble School of Arts which again is a good thing,’’ he said.

Cr Han­nan said since talks of re­de­vel­op­ment first be­gan his ‘‘high­est pri­or­ity was and still is’’ that Finley youth had some­where to play bas­ket­ball.

Ini­tially coun­cil ex­plored the op­tion of re­lo­cat­ing bas­ket­ball to the Finley Show­grounds In­door Sports Cen­tre.

How­ever, Cr Han­nan said coun­cil was told that it was ‘‘un­suit­able’’ for young peo­ple to play bas­ket­ball there.

“Coun­cil lis­tened to those con­cerns and as a re­sult, bas­ket­ball is now be­ing played on a reg­u­lar ba­sis by over 60 young peo­ple at the War Me­mo­rial Hall,’’ Cr Han­nan said.

“The youth of our town, which I am pas­sion­ate about, are now able to gain knowl­edge and skills in the game of bas­ket­ball, lead­er­ship and team skills through this ex­pe­ri­ence.

“Whilst I un­der­stand there will still be dis­agree­ment in our com­mu­nity, I believe this de­vel­op­ment will be a way for­ward for those in­ter­ested in both bas­ket­ball and the arts, and in keep­ing both groups sat­is­fied.’’

Tocumwal RFS mem­bers Garry Bond (Cap­tain), Dean Kele­her, Melissa Jar­rett, Stu­art Richards and John Kele­her.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.