The wet and windy weather did not stop the ceremonial first sod event held today to officially mark the construction of Queanbeyan’s new Civic and Cultural Precinct (QCCP).
The landmark $74 million precinct project will provide linkages to The Q and the Bicentennial Hall and draw together a new library, public domain for civic events, conference meeting rooms and facilities, as well as create new basement car parking, and provide a new head office for council staff.
Fencing will be installed throughout late July and early August to secure the construction site and make it safe for demolition and significant excavation to begin.
Construction will commence in August and is expected to take approximately two years.
Queanbeyan-Palerang Regional Council (QPRC) Mayor Tim Overall and QPRC CEO Peter Tegart were joined by Matthew Wilkinson, ADCO Construction Manager and Dr Aunty Matilda House, highly respected local Elder, this morning to kick off the much-anticipated project.
The sod turn event included a smoking of the ground by Aunty Matilda.
Mr Overall said the project was an essential component of Council’s CBD Transformation Strategy and will become a focal point for the community.
“It is the catalyst that allows us to get on with the transformation of the CBD by freeing up council-owned properties for possible future development,” he said.
As well as providing a new customer service centre for the community needing to interact or do business with Council, the precinct will include commercial lettable space for initiatives such as smart hubs, and space for NSW Government offices.
Since moving out of the previous building in the early 2010s, staff have been scattered across 11 buildings around the Queanbeyan CBD. This project will allow those staff to be housed under the one roof.
The construction site extends from the vacant block at 257 Crawford Street, beside the Queanbeyan Council Chambers, into the Lowe Car Park.
When the site is fully fenced, the parking spaces in the Lowe Car Park closest to the Queanbeyan Library will become unavailable. The lane to the car park from Rutledge Street, beside the Library, will also be closed.
While some parking spaces will be lost during the construction period, and temporary pedestrian access put in place, the project will ultimately deliver an increase of more than 60 parking spaces in the area.
Throughout the construction, several rows of parking will remain available in the Lowe Car Park closest to Monaro Street.
Council will be encouraging its own staff, and staff of nearby business premises, to make use of all-day parking at Queanbeyan Showground or Collett Car Park to help free up short stay parking for customers of nearby businesses.
Visit the project web page for more information on the Queanbeyan Civic and Cultural precinct.