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Updated plans for Narooma Arts and Community Centre on display now

Ian Campbell 31 August 2019
Narooma Chamber of Commerce President Matt Deveson, left, Narooma School of Arts secretary Laurelle Pacey, Cath and Graham Peachey at the opening of the Narooma Arts and Community Centre exhibition. Photo: Cat Wilson.

Narooma Chamber of Commerce President Matt Deveson, left, Narooma School of Arts secretary Laurelle Pacey, Cath and Graham Peachey at the opening of the Narooma Arts and Community Centre exhibition. Photo: Cat Wilson.

The community is “thrilled” with plans for the new Narooma School of Arts building.

“Everyone who has been involved in the project with our architects ClarkeKeller is so excited to see the results on display, and they look stunning,’” said Narooma School of Arts President Jenni Bourke.

The updated plans where revealed at a gala opening at the SoART Gallery, with the Development Application set to be lodged with Eurobodalla Shire Council by the first week of September.

“What’s more it’s for everyone, not only artists, and the many ways it can be used by our community into the future are only limited by our imagination,” Ms Bourke says.

Locals are urged to drop into the SoART Gallery over the next few weeks to take a closer look at the plans for what will be known as the Narooma Arts and Community Centre.

Narooma Arts and Community Centre

Narooma Arts and Community Centre – front. Photo: Supplied.

Initial designs were presented to the community before Christmas but have since been changed in response to feedback.

Ms Bourke says work on ideas for the Centre began over 10 years ago but the volunteer School of Arts committee, put plans to one side in 2015 to concentrate on the major renovation of the Narooma Kinema.

“When we completed the Kinema project early last year, the committee again picked up the Centre project particularly following the strong support of a community meeting last December,” she says.

“We estimate over 100 people have been involved in developing the plans over the years, and the School of Arts has invested about $130,000 in hard cash and in-kind to get to this stage.”

The Narooma Arts & Community Centre consultative group includes Anne McCusker, left, Jenni Bourke and Margaret Moran. Photo: Cat Wilson

Eurobodalla Councillor Phil Constable has congratulated everyone involved.

“Good on you for having the determination and commitment to pursue such a vision,” Cr Constable says.

“The planning and tireless work that’s gone into bringing it from the original concept to the design stage for the Development Application we see here today have been immense.

“To the School of Arts’ committee and members, architects ClarkeKeller and the design team, well done! It is a great team effort.

“My father, a longstanding committee member of the School of Arts, would have been most proud.”

The new Centre is slated for community land next to the historic Kinema, taking over what is now SoART Gallery. The place includes studio/workshops/meeting rooms and a large exhibition gallery with highway frontage.

Narooma Arts and Community Centre - Back. Photo: Supplied.

Narooma Arts and Community Centre – Back. Photo: Supplied.

Cr Constable says it was always going to be a challenge to design a modern building that sits comfortably next to the Kinema.

“However I believe this design will not detract from the Kinema and in fact will enhance the streetscape,” he says.

“I think you have nailed it.”

The plans are on display at the SoART Gallery (next to the Kinema) until September 13. Opening hours are Wednesday, Thursday, Friday 10 am to 3 pm, Saturdays 9 am to 1 pm.

The plans can also be viewed online at the School of Arts website.

Once the Development Application is approved, the School of Arts will seek funding from far and wide including from the Australian and NSW Governments. The School of Arts has Gift Donor Recipient status so donations over $2 are tax-deductible.

Narooma School of Arts President Jenni Bourke with Narooma Chamber of Commerce President Matt Deveson, left, and Narooma-based Eurobodalla Shire councillors Lindsay Brown, Phil Constable and Patrick McGinlay at the opening of the Narooma Arts and Community Centre exhibition. Photo: Cat Wilson

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