The Mount Gambier Regional Sport and Recreation Centre Community Reference Group (CRG) met for the first time last night at the Civic Centre.
It follows Council endorsement of 17 members of the CRG at its monthly full council meeting on Tuesday 17 July 2018.
The community members represent local schools, swim clubs, allied health care providers, community youth groups, sporting/recreation club representatives and other community groups.
The CRG was inducted at the meeting and provided with a project briefing.
“The CRG will play an important role in representing the community by providing input into the design, functionality and operations of the proposed community centre to ensure current and future needs of potential users are considered,” City of Mount Gambier Mayor Andrew Lee said.
CRG members are enthusiastic about contributing to the proposed project.
You can clearly see the vision for this centre and this is the first time in many years that all local sports clubs and community groups are working together to discuss the proposed facility. - CRG member Scott Martin
“I think this is a very positive step forward and is the best chance we’ve had in 30 years to achieve a project like this,” CRG member Jamie MacDonald said.
‘I’m supportive of the concept because it will serve the health, wellness, sport and recreation needs of people of all ages within our community,” CRG member Hazel Grant said.
The group intends to collaborate to bring community needs to the table as planning progresses over the coming months.
“Netball representatives have been part of this project since it was first discussed and we’re pleased to have the opportunity to see it through until the end and provide the community with a major sport and recreational hub,” CRG member Yvette Holmes said.
“Everyone is excited to see a visual of what the centre might look like and its facilities to enable further development opportunities and growth,” CRG member Matt Sutton said.
The Mayor indicated that members of the CRG will use their networks to inform the architect design process specifically in regards to the warm water pool, health and wellness room, court surfaces, show courts, wet areas, change areas, trainer and umpire rooms, water play and splash pad, mezzanine area, storage and office spaces.
The footprint of the concept plan will be retained which means there are areas that are not up for negotiation.
“The areas that won’t be altered include the six courts, 10 lane pool and beach access to the pool,” Mayor Lee said.
The proposed project will not proceed without external grant funding. Council is seeking $20million in funding from the Federal Government’s Regional Growth Fund. Council would need to provide up to $10million and the State Government would also need to provide at least $10million to support the project. This means that Council could achieve a $40million facility for a capital outlay of $10million.
“We are committed to the development of a funding proposal that is shovel ready. If we don’t put the research and development work in for the centre now, State and Federal Governments will allocate the funds to another community.”
“Should we be successful in attracting the funds to support this project, the funding rules are specific and if we are granted these funds, they can’t be used for any other purpose,” Mayor Lee said.
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