New playgrounds, a mystery ‘big’ attraction, trails and open spaces are among the proposed plans to revitalise the town centres of Pinnaroo and Lameroo.
Southern Mallee District Council is working alongside the community to prepare concepts which aim to create vibrant, community-focused spaces in the heart of each town. The first stages of both plans will be funded by the Council’s $1million Australian Government Drought Communities Program – Extension grant, which will be split equally across the two projects.
The Pinnaroo Village Green Masterplan Project has bold plans to rejuvenate land along the disused rail corridor in the middle of town. Stage 1 includes improving the open space areas, adding more street trees, improving access for RVs, caravans and large vehicles, entry plaza and landscape improvements to the museum, refurbishing the war memorial and upgrading the clock, creating a civic square with upgraded fountain, rotunda, gardens, footpath, seating, shelter and barbecue, and creating better linkages between Railway Terrace North and Railway Terrace South.
Future stages – which are subject to possible future grant funding – include a new nature play area featuring a flying fox and water play elements, new wetlands and bike and walking paths.
There’s also provision for a ‘big’ attraction, or a new memorable feature such as a unique sculpture or interactive artwork, to help put Pinnaroo on the map. All features of the draft masterplan, however, are open to change through community consultation. That process is now underway – and community members can view the plans and have their say via an online survey on the Council’s website until 25 March, 2020.
The Lameroo Town Centre Plan Project Stage 1 includes a toddler play area, nature play area, all-wheels pump track, dog park with double gates, barbecue shelter and barbecue, new table and chairs, drinking fountain and Ngarkat traditional owner interpretation area.
Future stages – which would require other external funding support – include a splash pad, visitor rest and information areas, new public toilets, public plaza with seating and WIFI access, shade structures and seating, an audio-visual interpretation at the old train station, a village green, parking for trucks, caravans and trailers, safe pedestrian crossing points, a new roundabout on the eastern end of the street and upgrades to the existing roundabout on the western end.
Under the federal grant guidelines, all construction using the drought funding, must be completed by the end of 2020, so local people are being urged to have their say now ahead of Stage 1 works beginning in the coming months.
Southern Mallee Chief Executive Officer Jason Taylor said Council was working closely with both communities to design long-term visions that will bring vibrancy, community recreation and increased tourist activity to the town centres.
“Both the Pinnaroo and Lameroo communities have been actively involved in helping to shape theconcepts for their towns through the projects’ steering committees and community consultationsessions, and we’ll be looking to residents for more input during the consultation on the draft plans – which is now open for Pinnaroo, and coming up in April for Lameroo,” Mr Taylor says.
“These plans will set out the future direction for these towns and create opportunities for more socially connected and active communities who can come together, recreate and have fun in more accessible and enjoyable public spaces.
“Both projects will also breathe new life into the hearts of these towns, creating new economic growth opportunities by developing attractive, central hubs that will draw visitors off the highway to discover more and stay longer.
“As a small regional Council, delivering projects of this magnitude can be a real challenge, so we are grateful to the Australian Government for the funding assistance, which will help us take the first steps towards making these plans for revitalisation of our towns.”
The Council has also applied for a further $3 million in funding through the Australian Government’s Building Better Regions Fund (BBRF) to assist in funding future stages of both projects.
Member for Barker Tony Pasin said the plans for Pinnaroo and Lameroo would create local stimulus for the towns’ economies and develop state-of-the-art recreation facilities and community spaces to bring residents together.
“Our rural towns are feeling the effects of consecutive years of drought and that’s impacting on them in many ways – from local businesses having to shut down, to residents and families facing the impacts of stress, uncertainty and loneliness, often worsened by isolation,” Mr Pasin says.
“The Australian Government’s Drought Communities Program is delivering real hope to communities such as the Southern Mallee, through new opportunities to deliver projects that generate off-farm jobs, create work for local businesses and build spaces and places where communities can connect and support each other.”
“As the drought steps up, so too does the Government’s response. We’re investing more than $8 billion in drought relief work, including $1 billion announced since the election.
“The Drought Communities Program has already delivered for Lameroo and Pinnaroo communities with new childcare facilities. Extending the program to give the council an additional $1 million will go that extra step to boosting the towns infrastructure,” Mr Pasin said.
The Pinnaroo Village Green Masterplan is now open for public consultation. To find out more, or to have your say via the online survey, visit: https://www.southernmallee.sa.gov.au/yourcouncil/public-consultation.
The Lameroo Town Centre Plan Project is expected to be considered by the Council at its March meeting, before being released for community feedback in April.
For more information on both projects, visit www.southernmallee.sa.gov.au.