Pressure on over gallery decisions

The latest push to relocate the Bega Valley Regional Gallery to Merimbula really does take the cake. - Eden's Australasia Group

Competition is heating up over where the Bega Valley Regional Gallery might be located with opposing groups keen to decry any suggestion it should be moved to Merimbula.

PLANNING: A concept design of the proposed Merimbula gallery site by Melbourne-based company Clinton Murray Architects. Picture: BVSC

PLANNING: A concept design of the proposed Merimbula gallery site by Melbourne-based company Clinton Murray Architects. Picture: BVSC

Eden’s Australasia Group wants the gallery to be part of the Hotel Australasia.

“The Hotel Australasia site is situated in a heritage precinct that appeals particularly to tourists, where the most financially successful museum in the shire, the Eden Killer Whale Museum and the increasingly popular Mary MacKillop Hall are located,” the group said.

“Why would you sell the Australasia site for a rock bottom price to developers with mediocre plans and no vision when you have been given a golden opportunity to reap the rewards of a significant investment from the NSW state government?”

It is an idea that councillor Sharon Tapscott believes should be explored.

Anne Marshall speaking for those who want to keep the gallery in Bega said it was a flawed process.

“It’s difficult to decide what’s more alarming ‒ the endemic corporate secrecy involved, the complete lack of community consultation or the appallingly specious nature of the decision making processes to date, not least being the facile online survey being peddled as we speak,” Ms Marshall said.

Councillor Robyn Bain said she remains unconvinced of a need to move the gallery from Bega given that the $7 million Civic Centre “is significantly under utilised, at the same time the council building has far too many people in it”.

Everyone agrees though, the gallery deserves a bigger and better space and it is time to move it from it’s current location thereby allowing cramped council staff to move into the space.

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