Grand plan for ConargoConargo Shire Council has developed a bold plan to reinvent their villages and encourage visitors to stop and spend time exploring the unique landscape and history of the area.
With a long term aim to improve the viability of local businesses and, in time, increase the Shire’s population, the Council sought professional assistance to develop a Masterplan for their largest village, Conargo, to help them prioritise works, look for new opportunities and support grant applications.
Community engagement was integral to the success of the project. Locals responded enthusiastically, sharing ideas and taking a high level of ownership of the process.
The Masterplan provides a framework for the next 10 to 15 years. The Council appointed three Works Team members to new Team Leader positions and projects were divided between the teams. Wherever possible projects were used as an opportunity for skill building of Council staff.
Works progressing in Conargo Village include Village Centre Park, which provides a rest area for travellers and truck drivers while giving residents a central park linked to the recreation reserve. It will showcase drought tolerant and indigenous plant species.
The new amenities block includes a small interpretive centre with a display case which houses an historic buggy restored by the local Men’s Shed.
An overnight rest area has been built and the village is now a designated RV Friendly Town. Village entry signs have been installed with significant avenue tree plantings to provide shade, welcome visitors and improve the environment for locals.
There are hopeful signs that the Council’s vision for their community is working.
Conargo Mayor Norm Brennan said Council was committed to ensuring they have vibrant community hubs across the Shire.
“We would also like to congratulate Liesl Malan Landscape Architects who have assisted us in getting our vision and concept of Conargo into a meaningful document which we can act on over time.
“The works have been so well received to date, that the other villages in the Shire are now also going through the consultation and design process so we can include them in our works plan.”