$1.9M boost for community spaces across South Australia

Four SA projects will share $1.9m in funding through the 2023-24 Open Space Grant Program aimed at revitalising public spaces.

Photo credit: The Barossa Council

Four projects across South Australia are set to benefit from a share of close to $2 million in funding through the 2023-24 Open Space Grant Program. This significant investment aims to revitalise and develop public spaces to enhance community engagement and social interaction.

The grants, which offer up to $500,000 in matched funding, have been awarded to initiatives that aim to add vitality to local areas and encourage greater utilisation and connection within communities. Four projects were deemed successful of the 45 proposals submitted, requesting a total of $16,214,622 in funding.

The City of Mitcham has received a substantial boost with two projects funded. The first, “Activating Hawthorn’s Hidden Gem,” and the second, the “Waite Street Reserve Upgrade,” will see a total investment of $900,000 from the grant programme. Each project will focus on upgrading and enhancing local spaces to provide residents with improved recreational and communal facilities.

Wakefield Regional Council has also secured $500,000 for the “Celebrating Port Wakefield’s Cultural Connection – Edward Street” project. This project aims to strengthen the cultural ties within the community by enhancing local public spaces.

The Barossa Council will also see significant development, with $500,000 allocated to the “Barossa Creative Industries Centre – External Open Space Component.” This initiative will focus on developing an area that nurtures creativity and community engagement in the region.

These funded projects are stewarded by their respective councils, each responsible for implementing and delivering each initiative. The aim is to provide communities with valuable assets that foster social connections and enhance the overall quality of life.

Nick Champion MP, Minister for Housing and Urban Development, highlighted the importance of these developments in his statement. “It is vital we continue to improve and update open spaces and public realm to ensure South Australia remains a great place to live with vibrant communities.”

He also expressed his enthusiasm for the potential of these spaces to foster connections and sustainability within communities long into the future. “These grants will enable councils to reimagine and create unique, local spaces across South Australia,” Champion added.

Catherine Hutchesson MP, Member for Waite, expressed her satisfaction with the allocations. “I am very pleased that with this funding, the City of Mitcham will have the capacity to deliver an upgraded open space for our community.”

Hutcheson acknowledged the community feedback, particularly concerning the need for improvements to the playground, which is frequently used by many young people. “The reserve is well utilised by the local community daily and also for special events like the Christmas Fair, Rotary plant sales, and other events,” Hutchesson continued, underscoring the significance of the grant.

These grants indicate the state’s commitment to supporting local councils to build more engaging and vibrant community spaces. As the projects commence, they promise to transform these areas and strengthen the communal ties within these neighbourhoods.

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