Wollongong residents, have your say on community facilities

Space for all: Members of Illawarra's Indian community celebrating Indian 
Independence Day at the Dapto Ribbonwood centre in 2011.

Space for all: Members of Illawarra's Indian community celebrating Indian Independence Day at the Dapto Ribbonwood centre in 2011.

People who use publicly owned buildings such as libraries, surf clubs and scout halls across the Wollongong local government area are being asked to speak up about what they want.

The city council is doing a survey on the use of building it owns all the way from Helensburgh and Windang.

There are more than 130 of these buildings including community centres, scout and guide halls, sports club meeting rooms and so on, Wollongong City Council said.

The council is reviewing how these buildings are used with a view to planning what services will be needed over the next 20 years.

Council’s policy for use of community facilities is to transfer management of halls, community centres and neighbourhood centres to “community organisations”, so as to “maximise their use … and reduce the net cost to council”. 

Those no longer required for general community use will be sold off.

I like to move it move it: Betty Golledge running a jazzercise class at the Horsley Community Centre in 2011.

I like to move it move it: Betty Golledge running a jazzercise class at the Horsley Community Centre in 2011.

“We’re asking people who regularly book and hire spaces in our facilities about how they meet your needs and what we might need to do to make sure they’re still valued spaces into the future,” the council’s manager of library and community services Jenny Thompson said.

We’re asking people who regularly book and hire spaces how they meet your needs and what we might need to do to make sure they’re valued ... into the future - Jenny Thompson, Wollongong City Council

“The Community Facilities Planning Survey is your chance to have your say about how these facilities should look and how we can make them better places to gather, celebrate and deliver services and other activities.

“Your feedback is important as it helps council to provide for you, your family and friends into the future and makes sure that the spaces and services we offer are the ones you want.’’

The survey is open until Friday, August 25.

Council has also been reviewing many of its policies relating to library and community services usage, including the allocation of community facilities to groups, and the facilities’ management.

Many of these amended policies were adopted en masse at the council meeting of July 17.

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