Friday, 3 June 2011

Town Hall - Community Centre - Have Your Say

The future of our Town Hall has been in question ever since the Wallace Community Board and SDC staff held a public meeting in November 2008 to tell the public that the hall didn't meet the seismic standards of the 2004 Building Act.

The Town Hall and Otautau's future itself became a central concern for many residents. The Otautau Community Action Group has formed to tackle these issues. They've met with the Wallace Community Board, the mayor of Southland as well as Venture Southland on the feasibility of a new community centre for the town.

The current thinking of our Group is that we are against the demolition of our Town Hall without there being a suitable replacement. That the $800,000 required to strengthen the old Hall would be better spent on a totally new Community Centre that would be more user-friendly, having catering facilities, be multi-purpose in configuration, i.e. having rooms varying in size to suit all purposes which will be warm and allowing in plenty of sunlight. A large auditorium with staging, dressing rooms and good acoustics would be retained. The new Hall/Community Centre would fully comply with the new earthquake requirements. (Source: OCAG letter to Otautau clubs)

The action group obtained an independent report on this issue and this can be found at the SDC Otautau office. The action group will be sending out a short questionnaire to local groups in order to guage interest in a community centre and whether groups would use it. If you belong to a group, fill out this form, include your comments and send it back asap. The sooner the forms get returned, the sooner this group can take the next step.

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