Refurbishment takes form

11-07-2018 by admin

Ararat Rural City Council’s Alison Tonkin, Williams Boag Architect Ray Cangadis, Regional Development Victoria’s Nicole Orriss, community representative Chris Harris, and Performing Arts Centre’s Dianne Toulson at Ararat Town Hall. Picture: SAMANTHA CAMARRIARARAT Rural City Council says the redevelopment of the Ararat Town Hall is on track.
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Community feedback has been incorporated into the designs for the redevelopment of the Ararat Performing Arts Centre and Art Gallery.

Ararat Mayor Paul Hooper said architectural firm Williams Boag had drawn onideas and suggestions put forward at a community forum hosted by council earlier in 2016.

“We had more than 50 people, including user groups, along to that forum and they raisedsome great ideas,” hesaid.

“The architects are still in the process of incorporating some of that feedback into theschematic designs, along with information from historic records.

“They are being very careful to preserve the precinct’s historic qualities while at the sametime creating spaces that will meet our needs today and into the future.”

The Project Control Group overseeing the $6.2 million redevelopment also met this week to confirmthe project was on track.

Final designs are expected to be in place mid-year, with construction due to start in early2017.

Cr Hooper said the revamped arts precinct would include a refurbished theatre foyer,expanded exhibition spaces, cafeand gardens.

There was also the promise of a new green room and larger dressing rooms for performers.

It will see a number of occupational health and safety issues addressed and an increase to the available storage space for the art gallery.

“Around 60,000 people use this precinct every year and it’s exciting to watch this longoverdue process unfold,” Cr Hooper said.

The Ararat Arts Precinct redevelopment has been funded via a partnership between thestate government, who contributed$3.7 million, the federal government $945,000and Ararat RuralCity Council.

Money for the project has been included as part of council’s 2016-17 draft budget.

The draft budget is on public display for feedback and will be presented at council’s June meeting.

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