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Here's why the indoor winter playground for kids has been delayed

June 15, 2022

Stock image.

By Peter Holmes

The equipment required for the promised indoor play centre over winter has been procured by Orange City Council.

However it remains in storage as council seeks to find people to assemble it to strict safety specifications.

Council is also locking in various insurances.

Council had hoped to open the centre at the start of winter, however it is not likely to be operational until July.

The play centre will operate out of Orange Tennis Centre in Palmer Street.

Council determined in April that it would cost about $5,000 a week to operate across winter, operating from 9am-3pm.

A bid to find an independent operator was unsuccessful.

“No interest has been gained for a short-term playground operator yet although discussions have been held with persons seeking to establish a permanent centre,” a staff report to council stated at the time.

The report said hopes for the venue to be set up in the former Pee Wees indoor play centre were dashed following discussions with Orange Ex-Services' Club, which owns the site.

Detailed inspections by council and Ex-Services’ staff showed that a significant switchboard upgrade would be required to reinstate the building to safe use.

“Several other options were subsequently investigated including the Orange Indoor Tennis Centre, the Redmond Place Hangar, the Carl Sharpe Cricket Centre (Wade Park), the Orange Function Centre and the Orange PCYC ... In addition, local real estate agents were contacted for usable space."

The play centre will only take up a portion of the indoor tennis centre, which will continue to operate.


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