The final touches are being made on the Whakatane Library and Exhibition Centre and the centre is expected to be open for business following a civic ribbon-cutting ceremony on June 28.
Whakatane Councillor David Dowd is the chairman of the project completion group and says the final touches are now being added to the building in preparation for its fit-out, the installation of exhibitions and the considerable task of moving the town’s library into its new premises.
“This really will be an exceptional facility, which befits the home of arts and culture for the Whakatane District.
“I have no doubt library users and visitors to the museum display and gallery exhibitions will be thrilled with what they find and experience.”
The project completion group is working with a number of potential naming rights sponsors for spaces within the centre.
David is confident sponsorship income and operational savings will cover most of the funding shortfall for the building’s fit-out.
“At this stage, we will not be proceeding with any substantial landscaping around the building exterior.
“The work will be undertaken at some point in time in the next 12 months, once funding for it has been secured.
He says until the formal landscaping project determines where ‘The Lion’ will be located, it will remain outside the Civic Centre.
“It’s a surprisingly expensive object to move, so we don’t want to take the chance of having to do it twice.”