November 20, 2016
There was some surprising good news for guests attending the official opening of Heritage Lodge in Nanango last Thursday … construction will start soon on a fourth duplex at the housing complex.
Heritage Lodge – which aims to provide long-term housing for people with disabilities – is a joint project between South Burnett CTC, Heritage Bank Nanango, and the South Burnett Regional Council.
The project also secured $488,000 in funding in 2014 from the State Government’s Elderly Parent Carer Innovation Trial as well as a donation of land, organised by then-Treasurer Tim Nicholls.
The eventual plan is to build six duplexes on the site on the corner of Gipps and Dalby streets, Nanango.
So far, three duplexes have been constructed, and they were the focus of attention on Thursday.
However, Heritage Nanango Community Funding chair Wendy Zerbst announced a fourth would be built soon.
Heritage and CTC would each put $150,000 towards the cost.
South Burnett CTC CEO Nina Temperton said it had been a five-year struggle “to get where we are today”.
She thanked the groups which had assisted with the funding – especially Heritage Bank Nanango which had contributed $350,000, an amount that had been matched dollar-for-dollar by CTC.
Council had put $200,000 from the sale of Karinya towards the costs of roads and infrastructure.
Mrs Temperton said the total project so far had cost $1.3 million.
She said builder Clint Andrewartha deserved special thanks as he had stuck by his original quote for five years despite all the delays.
Mrs Temperton reflected on the “many obstacles” and “blame-shifting” in the bureaucracy that had to be overcome.
“It was a project that had universal approval but it was four years before the first sod was turned,” she said.
“Due to the delays, some potential clients died and others (who could not wait) moved away.”
Tenants at Heritage Lodge pay market rents, and this money will be used by CTC for maintenance.
Member for Nanango Deb Frecklington said the project was of great importance to Nanango and the whole South Burnett.
“The provision of this type of facility in regional areas is wonderful for families who have a child with a disability,” Mrs Frecklington said.
“It’s reassuring for elderly parent carers, knowing a local facility like this will help provide accommodation solutions for their loved ones, so they can live the life they choose.
“I know how hard Nina Temperton and her team from South Burnett CTC have worked to complete this project and I’m proud to have been able to assist to make it a reality.”
Disability Services Minister Coralee O’Rourke said the project was a “wonderful example of how such partnerships can provide more suitable and sustainable accommodation options for people with disability”.
She said the construction had led to the creation of extra work for local tradespeople and suppliers during construction.