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Community Board Recommends Council Funding And Agrees Name For New Luggate Community Facility

Wānaka Community Board (‘the Board’) has agreed with the recommendation that $1 million from the Wānaka Asset Sale Reserve (‘the Reserve’) be allocated to the total project cost for the new Luggate community facility.

At its meeting in Hāwea today, the Board also agreed the English name for the facility should be Luggate Memorial Centre. The Māori name will be Whare Mahana.

Chair Barry Bruce said one of the Board’s roles is to help identify new and existing projects that would be appropriate recipients for Reserve funds. These funds have accumulated over time with one of the largest contributions coming from the proceeds of Queenstown Lakes District Council’s sale of Scurr Heights in 2016.

“The key criterion is that projects must benefit the Upper Clutha community. The replacement Luggate hall ticks all the boxes and we had no issues recommending that Council agrees a $1 million allocation,” said Mr Bruce.

“Not only will it meet an essential need for the Luggate community but, as one of the first community buildings in New Zealand built to ultra-low energy ‘Passive House’ standards, it will also make its mark on a national stage.”

Board agreement on the facility’s name follows a meeting of the local stakeholder group on 2 September that concluded that ‘memorial’ should be included. This was to acknowledge the previous Luggate Memorial Hall which has been closed since failing a seismic assessment in 2017.

Mr Bruce said its Māori name, Whare Mahana (meaning ‘warm house’), was gifted by Kāi Tahu in response to the facility’s Passive House standard and its warmth and comfort for the community.

“Plaques and other items have been salvaged from the old hall so it will have a physical presence in the new building as well as a sentimental one. Reinforcing this legacy with the choice of English name makes perfect sense and will be a fitting tribute both to those to whom the Memorial Hall was dedicated and the people who used it,” he said.

As a Council-managed asset available for a range of uses and activities, the new Luggate Memorial Centre will be a focal point for the local community as well as residents of the wider district and visitors. A temporary building is currently available for bookings and details for the new hall will be available closer to its opening.

QLDC Property Director Richard Pope said a registration of interest was currently in the market as the first stage in selecting the main contractor.

“Shortlisted companies will be invited to tender next month. Once selected, the main contractor will be responsible for the construction of the new centre which is planned to start early next year,” said Mr Pope.

“Considerable effort has gone into the project already and I’d like to thank our design and project teams for the excellent progress to date, along with local stakeholders including the Luggate Community Association, our funding partners, and our internal team.”

The design and project teams include staff from WSP, Salmond Architecture, Hiberna, The Building Intelligence Group and Rider Levett Bucknall.

If agreed at a future full Council meeting, the Reserve funds will add to other significant grants made recently by Central Lakes Trust ($750,000) and the Otago Community Trust ($400,000). The total budget for Whare Mahana | Luggate Memorial Centre is $4,845,000.

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