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Earthsong offset by community use

10 December 2004

Interest on loan to Earthsong offset by community use

The Council has approved a $300,000 interest free loan to Earthsong Centre Trust to enable a community facility to be built.

It is estimated that up to 500 hours of community use every year will more than compensate for the interest.

"Partial use of the facility for community purposes is actually good value for our money,” says Chairperson of the Finance and Operational Performance Committee, Councillor Janet Clews

“The Council's loan to Earthsong will be at no cost to ratepayers and is absolutely secure as far the property is concerned. It is utterly in accord with the Council's strategic direction. The forgiving of the interest is more than compensated for by the community use that will result from this arrangement,” she says.

Earthsong Eco-Neighbourhood at 457 Swanson Road, Ranui is an innovative “co-housing” community whose members are involved in a large range of organisations in the wider community.

The facility will be used for the wider community and individual visitors to learn about and become involved in exchanges, practical activities, information sharing, education and research related to eco-housing, permaculture practices and social sustainability.

“Earthsong's vision aligns particularly well with the Council's Three Waters objective to demonstrate innovative water management and its Zero Waste, Sustainable Energy and Clean Air, Strong Communities and Active Democracy platforms,” says Councillor Clews,

Construction of the new building is expected to begin in mid 2005.

ENDS

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