Citizens Panel to drive community ownership and input into future use of Artarmon Bowling Club site
25 July 2017
Willoughby Council is moving forward with plans to bring the former Artarmon Bowling Club site into community use, by establishing a Citizens Panel that will consider future options for the Artarmon Bowling clubhouse building. Willoughby Council purchased the former Artarmon Bowling Club site, located at 1A Burra Rd in February 2016, on condition that the site must remain a community recreation facility.
The establishment of a Citizen’s Panel follows initial, broad community consultation on the future of the site, which showed there is support from the community for the restoration, repair and retention of the clubhouse building to be used for a mix of community recreation uses, and out of school hours child care.
Consultation results also indicate the community’s support for the site to have a predominantly passive recreation theme, with an emphasis on family-orientated recreation and older children’s activities.
A building audit of the 60 year old weatherboard building indicates that an estimated $1.5M would be required for building upgrades to meet current building standards. Given ongoing costs involved with the retention, renovation and operation of the building, it is essential to further test the support for the retention of the building in relation to Council’s other community buildings in Artarmon.
The Citizens Panel will undertake a preliminary assessment of the suggested uses, the availability of other community facilities in proximity, and the cost of upgrading and maintaining the current building.
The Panel will report back and make their recommendation to Council by December 2017. Once the future of the building is determined, the Master Plan for the adjoining Artarmon Reserve can be finalised.
“Council is pleased to see its decision to purchase the former Artarmon Bowling Club site has been warmly embraced by the community, with strong interest in the future recreation uses for the site. We have significant community buy-in and we want that community interest and voice to continue to inform us,” said Willoughby Mayor Gail Giles-Gidney.
“The Citizens Panel is just one of the ways in which Council is driving innovative community consultation - harnessing the knowledge, expertise and passion of the local community. It is designed to give the community a greater voice, ownership, and inform Council’s decision making,” Mayor Gail said.
Details on how members of the public can apply to be a part of the Citizens Panel will be made available shortly at www.willoughby.nsw.gov.au, or by phoning 9777 1000.
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