This morning (Friday 23 April 2010) I headed down to Pine Lane, Huonville to turn the ‘first sod’ at the Pine Lane Development, a wonderful initiative of the Franklin/Esperance Parish. It was fun turning the ‘first sod’ amidst trucks and construction activity (see photos below).
It was the first time I had worn a hard hat since my engineering days and building a new church facility in Melbourne (GWAC). Lots of excitement and smiles all around Congratulations to the Parish of Franklin / Esperance.
Deborah Vaughan, of Font Public Relations, issued the following media release on behalf of the Diocese and Parish today,
Sod-turn marks official commencement of works at Huonville accommodation complex
Work officially commenced today on the new accommodation complex at Huonville for older members of the Huon Valley community, when head of the Anglican Church in Tasmania, Bishop John Harrower, turned the first sod.
The development of 28 residential accommodation units in Pine Lane attracted considerable community interest in recent months . . .
Bishop John said members of the Franklin/Esperance Parish, who are responsible for both the construction and future management of the complex, have been pleased to engage directly with the community in a fully transparent manner regarding the development. “The Franklin/Esperance Parish undertook to provide regular updates to the community regarding progress of the development, and I am extremely pleased to officially turn the first sod today, and formally declare the project underway,” Bishop Harrower said.
The $5.8 million Pine Lane development is being funded under Stage 2 of the Australian Government’s Nation Building Economic Stimulus Plan.
Read the full media release here.
The following are my speaking notes, prior to the turning of the sod.
Welcome to everyone and thank you for attending. I am very pleased to be invited to officially turn the first sod at the Pine Lane development.
A lot of people have worked very hard to get us to this point. There are far too many people to thank individually, but I would especially like to acknowledge the contribution from Lee Tyers and Russell Morton, together with Noel Bowditch, the Parish Council and the Building Committee. I also wish to acknowledge the assistance and support from the Housing Innovations Unit within the Tasmanian Government, especially from Bernadette Jago, Peter White and Tony Jacques. To the many others who have worked tirelessly, thank you.
The Parish participated in a very competitive and rigorous process to secure funding of almost $6 million from the Australian Government to build these 28 units; in fact there were 226 other projects who also bid for funds. With funding secured, we are now determined to make this a very admirable development. Each unit will be built to 6-star energy ratings; and as well as 28 units, the development will include landscaped pathways, recreational spaces with a rotunda, and a community centre.
The building team is committed to achieving the highest possible benchmark for every component of the development. Through a competitive tender process, we are proud to say local builders and contractors have been appointed to build these units, which has represented a great opportunity for our local community. The building of these 28 units and a Community Centre will not only be a great asset for the Anglican Church, but more importantly will be a great asset for the Huon Valley.
We feel this project is a great opportunity for the Church to directly connect with the broader community and help those who need a little help.
Once again, I am proud to be here today to turn officially the so called ’first sod’ on the Pine Lane development, so without further ado …