Full support by all Council members at next Monday night’s meeting is vital for the purchase of a building for the purpose of a community centre for the Doughiska area, according to Cllr Mike Crowe.
The east of the city has seen a considerable increase in the population of this area, in particular the Doughiska and Roscam neighbourhoods. With the increase in the population comes demands for social and community facilities.
Cllr Crowe said that in this regard, the City Council has been proactive in meeting the demands that have arisen. Amenity zoned lands were purchased in tandem with the ongoing residential development and these lands have been developed to provide playing pitches for a number of footballing codes, a substantial playground is in place together with tennis and basketball courts and further lands have been provided for a primary and secondary school.
“There is an existing temporary primary school in situ, which was provided by the local community working with the Department of Education and Skills. In the provision of the above facilities, the input and cooperation of the local community, led by the Doughiska, Roscam, Ardaun Community Group (DRA ) was essential and I would like to compliment this group in leading the way,” he said.
“It has been vital to the success of the work to date. An important and crucial facility that remains outstanding, is a community centre.
He said that the DRA has identified a premises, the Amber House Hotel, located along the Doughiska Road, as a suitable building for community, educational and related activities.
“The hotel is vacant and has been so for a considerable length of time. It is proposed by the DRA to acquire the premises and convert it for community, educational and related uses. The contract price is in the region of €520,000 and the DRA is requesting the City Council to commit €200,000 towards the project over a 4 year period, that is €50,000 for the years 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2016.
“I ensured when doing this year’s budget that there would be a commitment of €50,000 for this project. The balance of the monies are being provided by the Galway Diocese (€300,000 ), private funder (€100,000 ). The renovation works will cost in the region of €200,000, the costs will be borne by the Diocese and Department of Education and Skills on behalf of the City VEC. “
“Furthermore, the operation and running of the community facility will be carried out by the community under the auspices of the DRA. A Board of Management will be put in place and a representative of the City Council will be on this committee. The investment that will be required by the local authority is small for the project that will be delivered It is a win-win for all concerned and will add significant value to the area. I am hopeful that all members of the Council will support this project on Monday night,” concluded Cllr Crowe.