May 8, 2009

$2.9 million for Healesville Arts & Community Precinct – Stage Two

$2.9 million for Healesville Arts & Community Precinct – Stage Two

MEDIA RELEASE

The Hon Anthony Albanese MP

The Minister for Infrastructure, Transport,

Regional Development and Local Government

Leader of the House

Member for Grayndler

May 8 2009

Anthony Albanese, Minister for Infrastructure and Local Government, and Bill Shorten, Parliamentary Secretary for Victorian Bushfire Reconstruction, have announced the Rudd Government will offer $2.9 million towards Stage Two of the Healesville Arts & Community Precinct in the Yarra Valley.

Mr Shorten was in Healesville today for the announcement with Mayor of Yarra Ranges Shire, Len Cox.

This project will upgrade the Healesville Memorial Hall to deliver a high quality arts, performance, exhibition, and meeting-place to serve the Yarra Valley.

It will also act as a focal point to help rebuild community spirit after the devastating bushfires that swept through the Yarra Ranges in February.

Federal funding for the $6.8 million project is part of our $800 million Community Infrastructure Program – the largest one-off investment in local infrastructure in Australia’s history.

Through the Rudd Government’s economic stimulus package, we are investing in major projects like this to support local jobs and economies during the global recession.

Stage Two of the Healesville Arts and Community Precinct will involve a major upgrade and extension of the Memorial Hall complex across three floors. It will accommodate the needs of performing arts, exhibitions, community meetings and related activities.

The establishment of the overall Arts and Community Precinct will provide a new library, performing arts venue and gallery space, meeting and training rooms, a Yarra Ranges Shire Service Centre, as well as facilities for community organisations.

The Healesville Memorial Hall project will significantly increase the venue’s capacity to serve the local community, schools, regional visitors and people with disability.

It will also provide economic opportunities by raising the profile of the local arts community, including local Indigenous artists.

The funding announced today builds on the $1.74 million the Rudd Government has already delivered for 23 projects in the Yarra Ranges Shire Council.

Nearly 70 per cent of the stimulus package is infrastructure with construction projects already underway. More than 3,000 projects are being funded through the Government’s Community Infrastructure Program across Australia to support local jobs.