Reaction is mostly positive to the Gore District Council’s $6.82 million concept plan for developing the town’s James Cumming Wing and new library.
About 80 people, including residents, councillors and staff, attended plan’s launch at the St James Theatre last week.
The launch included a virtual tour of the new facilities.
The James Cumming Wing will become the permanent home of the Gore Library as well as a new community centre.
Gore resident Faye Jones said the facility would be an asset to the town.
“I love the fact that it was open and spacious-looking,” she said.
“I love the modern look of it.”
St Mary’s School principal Annie Nelson said staff and pupils regularly used the James Cumming Wing and library and were pleased with the plan.
“We’re so blessed it’s just over the road Mrs Nelson said.
Resident Anne Gover said the concept looked “fantastic”.
“It’s a rather sterile atmosphere and hopefully there’ll be trees and a water feature in the courtyard to soften it and some trees still out on the front of Ardwick St rather than just glass windows.”
While they were impressed with the design, Gore Garden Club secretary Noreen Thomas and president Anne Hunt were disappointed the club would not be able to hold its annual flower show in the James Cumming Wing any longer, as the new hall would be half the size.
“The James Cumming Wing hall was central in the town and meant school parties were able to walk to our show,” Mrs Hunt said.
Gore Mayor Tracy Hicks said the plan contained many ideas from the community.
“There’ll be opportunity for further ideas to refine this as we go along and we want to get your feedback,” he said.
“We’re open to positive and negative thoughts.
“What we are trying to design here is something that hopefully will take us not only 40 or 50 years forward but also further on than that.”
Council chief executive Steve Parry said there had been a need to both update the James Cumming Wing facade and replace the library, and the plan was the “most cost-effective option for the council”.
The council already had most of the money for the project from sources including a $3 million government shovel-ready grant.