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Essential community services the centre of attention

Essential community services the centre of attention

Thursday, March 28, 2024

A major milestone in Donnybrook’s development was reached this week when the first sod was turned on the Murnong Community Centre.

The $11.4 million facility, to be located at 183 Olivine Boulevard, Donnybrook, will be the first community centre built in the rapidly growing suburb.

City of Whittlesea CEO Craig Lloyd joined Member for Yan Yean Lauren Kathage MP on 27 March to mark the occasion.

The Murnong Community Centre will help to address the demand for purpose-built infrastructure delivering essential community services.

Two kindergarten rooms will help meet the need for three- and four-year-old kinder services, while maternal and child health services will be delivered from two consultation suites.

A public lounge featuring a mini-branch library will provide residents with access to Yarra Plenty Regional Library’s extensive catalogue, as well as free Wi-Fi and flexible spaces to work and study.

Organisations, community groups and residents will be able to hold their events or programs in either the large community hall or multipurpose activity rooms.

The centre will have a Changing Places facility to support people with high care needs, and an accessible public toilet available seven days a week.

There will also be a focus on sustainability, with the centre to be equipped with solar panels, a water tank, double glazed windows and other energy efficient materials.

Chair Administrator Lydia Wilson said community centres were a vital part of creating connections and reducing isolation in new communities.

“The Murnong Community Centre will be an accessible and inclusive facility providing residents with the support services they need from birth through to their senior years,” she said.

“Having this centre close to home will reduce the need for Donnybrook residents to travel long distances to access essential community services.”

The City of Whittlesea is contributing $4.01 million towards the centre, with the remainder to be funded by Victorian Government grants.

These include $4.5 million from the Building Blocks Capital Grants Program, $2 million from the Growing Suburbs Fund, $709,500 from the Living Libraries Infrastructure Program and $180,000 from the Changing Places Program.

Construction is expected to commence in mid-2024 and the centre completed in 2025.

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