Breathing fresh life into Lameroo's town centre

A variety of play and gathering spaces are set to revitalise Lameroo's town centre. Photo: Bron Pahl.
A variety of play and gathering spaces are set to revitalise Lameroo's town centre. Photo: Bron Pahl.

New life will be breathed into Lameroo's town centre as it is reinvigorated to accommodate for more family-friendly activities.

Stage one of the Lameroo Town Centre Plan Project will see a various play and gathering spaces installed with federal government funding given to the Southern Mallee District Council through the Drought Communities Program extension.

The council received $1 million and will split it equally between the Lameroo and Pinnaroo town centre projects.

With an aim of creating "vibrant, community-focused spaces", the plan for Lameroo includes a toddler play area, nature play area, all-wheels pump track, dog park with double gates, barbecue shelter and barbecue, new table and chairs, drinking fountain, and Ngarkat traditional owner interpretation area.

The concept plans were considered by the steering committee and by council at its March meeting, and they will go out for public consultation in April.

Council chief executive officer Jason Taylor said the council had already worked closely with locals to come up with a long-term vision which would boost community connection and tourist activity in the town centre.

"Both the Pinnaroo and Lameroo communities have been actively involved in helping to shape the concepts for their towns through the projects' steering committees and community consultation sessions, and we'll be looking to residents for more input during the consultation on the draft plans," he said.

"These plans will set out the future direction for these towns and create opportunities for more socially connected and active communities who can come together, recreate and have fun in more accessible and enjoyable public spaces."

He saw the projects creating new economic growth as the "attractive, central hubs" would bring visitors from the highway to the town to stay longer and explore what it had to offer.

Another $3 million worth of grants through the Building Better Regions federal government fund has been applied for to help with other stages of both the Lameroo and Pinnaroo plans.

Future plans for Lameroo include a splash pad, visitor rest and information areas, new public toilets, public plaza with seating and wi-fi access, shade structures and seating, an audio-visual interpretation at the old train station, a village green, parking for trucks, caravans and trailers, safe pedestrian crossing points, a new roundabout on the eastern end of the street, and upgrades to the existing roundabout on the western end.

Member for Barker Tony Pasin was keen to see state-of-the-art recreation facilities and community spaces bringing locals together.

"Our rural towns are feeling the effects of consecutive years of drought and that's impacting on them in many ways - from local businesses having to shut down, to residents and families facing the impacts of stress, uncertainty and loneliness, often worsened by isolation," he said.

"The Australian government's Drought Communities Program is delivering real hope to communities such as the Southern Mallee, through new opportunities to deliver projects that generate off-farm jobs, create work for local businesses and build spaces and places where communities can connect and support each other."

Mr Pasin said as issues with the drought increase, so too would the government's response.

"The Drought Communities Program has already delivered for Lameroo and Pinnaroo communities with new childcare facilities. Extending the program to give the council an additional $1 million will go that extra step to boosting the towns infrastructure," he said.

For more information on both projects, visit www.southernmallee.sa.gov.au.