Celebrating a $2 million State Government funding windfall for Moree’s parks and public spaces today, Moree Plains Shire Council General Manager Lester Rodgers, left, Councillor Kerry Cassells, Senior Strategic Development Officer Murray Amos, Councillor Stephen Ritchie, Mayor Katrina Humphries and Northern Tablelands MP Adam Marshall.
Wednesday, 16 June 2021
A PERFORMANCE amphitheatre, Indigenous public art installations, dog agility park and exercise facilities are just a few of the improvements which are included in an exciting $2 million State Government-funded plan to improve liveability and social outcomes in Moree.
The major funding injection was announced today by Member for Northern Tablelands Adam Marshall, who said it was the result of the State Government’s Public Spaces Legacy Program, which incentivised councils to accelerate their assessments of development applications (DAs) and rezonings to create new development capacity and meet demand for housing and employment over the next decade.
Mr Marshall said the improvements to Cooee Park, the Mehi River corridor and Jacaranda Park would make Moree a more vibrant place for people to live, work and visit.
“As Moree prepares for the jobs boom created by the Moree Special Activation Precinct (SAP) and Inland Rail, Moree Plains Shire Council is looking at ways to address social issues which may prevent businesses and people relocating to the town,” Mr Marshall said.
“To increase liveability, council has come up with an ambitious plan to develop parks and public spaces in a way that promotes community pride and encourages health and wellbeing.
“In south Moree the Cooee Park redevelopment which started in 2016 will continue, with the addition of a basketball court, children’s bike track and shade shelters. Community feedback has requested a monument be created to strengthen community links to culture and local Aboriginal history.
“In the centre of town the underutilised Mehi River corridor will be activated through the addition of an Indigenous public art monument, amphitheatre for waterside events, dog agility park, scenic river boardwalk, ninja-warrior styled fitness course and shared pedestrian/cycle linkage to the Mary Brand Park.
“These proposals have the joint benefit of providing culturally sensitive play and sports facilities for Moree’s Aboriginal community while also creating an accessible pedestrian corridor connecting south Moree to the CBD.”
Mr Marshall said the “cherry on top” was the planned redevelopment of Jacaranda Park in Amaroo.
“The Moree SAP will see a significant increase in Moree’s population and this growth is expected to be largely accommodated in flood free residential land at Amaroo,” he said.
“To entice families into the area, Jacaranda Park will be transformed into a friendly community space with inclusive play equipment, multi-sports court with basketball and soccer goals, fitness course and zip line.
“Public art will be prominent with a monument to the hot artesian waters of which Moree is renowned.
“Having these high quality public spaces, similar to what can be found in the city, will be an enticement for those considering making the move.”
Moree Plains Shire Mayor Katrina Humphries said the three projects had been selected to deliver landmark infrastructure to local public space.
“This program will provide a significant upgrade in the range and quality of public open space infrastructure in Moree,” Cr Humphries said.
“The grant is the result of council’s Planning & Building section successfully implementing a Planning Reform Action Plan, to improve assessment processes and efficiency.
“Development Application assessment times are also on track to meet the required improvements under the Public Spaces Legacy Program.
“I thank Adam and the State Government for having the faith in MPSC to deliver on these exciting projects. Community space is very important for health, wellbeing and peace of mind.”