Northern Grampians Shire Council has secured $640,000 in Victorian State Government funding to refurbish the Stawell library. Minister for Local Government Shaune Leane MP confirmed Council’s successful application for the Living Libraries Infrastructure Program in a letter addressed to NGSC Mayor Cr Murray Emerson in April.
The project, “Modernising the Stawell Library”, will see extensive works undertaken to improve the overall function and renovate the library that still retains many features from the original 1980s build. The cornerstone of the revitalisation is a new conservatory-styled space that will close in the courtyard and give community groups and creatives an all-weather space for their activities. Inside the library, a modular circulation desk will replace the outdated cabinetry and partitioned, public computer desks and portable shelving on wheels will provide flexible fitout options in accordance with Covid safety guidelines. The existing kitchen will also be redesigned to allow public access to teamaking facilities.
A general refresh of the library interior and exterior – painting, flooring, panelling, lighting and landscaping – is also proposed.
Under the funding guidelines, the project will commence within the next 18 months with completion due within three years.
Quotes attributable to Minister for Local Government Shaun Leane
“The Living Libraries Infrastructure Program makes a real difference for communities across the state, delivering high-quality library facilities and ensuring that all Victorians have access to a public library.”
“Investments like this help create local jobs and ongoing employment opportunities. The Victorian Government is investing in communities and local neighbourhoods because we understand the difference projects like these can make.”
Quotes attributable to Member for Western Victoria Jaala Pulford
“It’s great to see the Victorian Government supporting Stawell’s library with this investment that will make it an even more valuable space for our community.”
“The library is a much-loved part of Stawell and it’s about so much more than books. Through this project even more local people will be able to access all the great services the library provides.”
Northern Grampians Shire Council Mayor, Cr Murray Emerson, sees the funding announcement as a giant leap forward for the library.
“Thank you to the State Government for the Living Libraries Infrastructure Program funding,” Cr Emerson said.
“Our community will be so excited to hear that there is now funding to implement many of the changes they requested as part of our feedback process with them.
“These renovations will greatly enhance the function and experience of the Stawell library and provide our community and visitors with considered and practical spaces for them to read, study, work and convene in.”