KING Island is set to receive $5 million to develop a multi-purpose community centre at Currie. King Island Council has been working on The Hub project for the past two years and has confirmed a Commonwealth grant will enable the vision to become a reality.
Cr. Duncan McFie has chaired a councillor working group, including Cr Vernon Philbey, Cr Gina Green and Cr Ira Cooke which, supported by council staff, has been working tirelessly to achieve a concept all councillors could support.
“The concept of a ‘hub’ that brings together different community groups and functions has been talked about on King Island for over 20 years,” Cr McFie said. “The fact that we now have an executed deed that gives us the funding to achieve this is exciting.”
A new multi-purpose building will be constructed between the Currie Museum and the Lighthouse and the previous general manager’s residence will be incorporated into the project precinct.
Council’s decision to site the building in this location was made after community consultation about the scope and location of the project, together with budget practicalities, engineering, logistics, and impact concerns.
A community lounge over-looking Currie Harbour will function as a meeting and event space and a fit-for-purpose Visitor Information Centre will provide an opportunity for King Island to be showcased.
The King Island Arts and Cultural Centre and King Island Regional Development Organisation (KIRDO) will relocate to this site. Specific feedback from KIRDO, the King Island Historical Society, King Island Tourism and the King Island Arts and Cultural Advisory Committee was sought and location of these stakeholders within the new precinct will be the next stage of the design.
Councillors strongly believe that, collectively, these actions will enhance King Island as a destination for visitors and new residents and will increase the facilities available for community members.
The Currie Town Hall is the State Government approved Emergency Recovery Centre for King Island, but it is not currently fit for purpose. Therefore, the grant deed also allows council to utilise a portion of the $5m funding to improve facilities to include adding showers and improving the Town Hall foyer entrance.
A detailed design brief is being prepared and feedback will be sought from members of the Municipal Emergency Management Committee before it is finalised.