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Dogs club proposal

ON TRACK: Horsham Greyhound Racing Club president Jenni Coustley and manager Justin Brilliant look at plans for the $2.5-million development, on the banks of the Wimmera River. Picture: LUKE HOBBS

By DEAN LAWSON
Horsham Greyhound Racing Club officials are developing plans for a $2.5-million reception building at Horsham showgrounds and believe their project could expand to support a performing arts centre.
Club leaders have identified a Crown Land site overlooking the Wimmera River in the south-western corner of the showgrounds as an ideal value-adding area for a large community project.
Club president Jenni Coustley and manager Justin Brilliant will present conceptual drawings of a double-storey reception and conference facility, designed to fit between existing dining and administration buildings, to committee members on Tuesday night.
They will then explore the various approvals and ways of attracting the funding they need to proceed with the development which would significantly improve showground infrastructure along McPherson Street.
But separate community debate surrounding a site for a new multi-million-dollar performing arts centre in Horsham prompted Mr Brilliant to consider the broader community potential of the showgrounds.
He said river-front land south of greyhound facilities presented no acquisition cost, token Crown Land rent, ample parking and a great way to capitalise on the benefits of the Wimmera River.
It would also represent dramatic change in aesthetic showgrounds appearance to people travelling over the Wimmera River Bridge into Horsham.
Needs
“All that is there at the moment are iron buildings and trotting facilities that are no longer used. It’s probably close to a hectare of land we’re talking about and if we are successful with our project, a performing arts centre wouldn’t need a kitchen or reception facilities. They would already be there,” he said.
“If Ballarat or Warrnambool had the land we’re talking about available you can bet it wouldn’t be sitting idle.”
Ms Coustley said projects capitalising on the benefits of each other would be a significant way of combining community needs.
“From our perspective we’ve identified a significant shortfall in reception facilities in Horsham and our space under our grandstand is booked nearly every week with functions. This is why we’re keen to proceed with our development,” she said.
“As a community-based sporting club we can also see the bigger and broader picture for Horsham district and a combined project would be a great way to bring sport and the arts together.”
Horsham Rural City Council is considering a short-list of site options for a performing arts centre.
Mr Brilliant has presented the proposal to council chief executive Peter Brown.
Arts Victoria has set aside $10 million for a Horsham performing arts centre at Horsham Town Hall.

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Posted on Jul 27 2011

Posted by on Jul 27 2011. Filed under Breaking News, FEATURED, News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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