More improvements are earmarked for the town of Virginia following a state government funding announcement of $2.6 million last month.
City of Playford (COP) will now spend more than $6 million on the town’s main street upgrade, which includes undergrounding of powerlines, improved street lighting, removal of inappropriate trees and now, revitalising the Institute Park at the street’s southern end.
COP mayor Glenn Docherty, said council had recently been successful in attracting $2.6M funding through the state government’s Places for People program.
“This enables the entire project to be delivered during 2021 and will also incorporate the revitalisation of Virginia Institute Park to create an attractive, walkable and vibrant town centre,” Mayor Docherty said.
COP has committed $3.6m and the state government $2.6m to this project, meaning $6.2 million will be spent on Virginia’s main street over the next 18 months to two years.
After an extensive public consultation process, work started on the long-awaited upgrade last month.
“The undergrounding of power lines is a significant milestone for the Virginia Main Street project and a key step toward realising the vision of the main street to be a welcoming place for locals, businesses and visitors to Virginia,” Mayor Doherty said.
“With removal of poles and wires, undergrounding the power lines will enhance the appearance of the street with new street lighting and improved pedestrian footpath access.
“Virginia is a fast growing community and it is good to see the state government investing in a project in a growth area.”
Mayor Docherty said the Virginia Main Street project had been shaped by the local community through significant engagement activities and COP would make some final decisions on the design of the project over the coming weeks.
COP councillor Peter Rentoulis is looking forward to the project revitalising the main thoroughfare through the town.
“People have embraced this project,” he said.
“There has been huge community consultation; people have had their say, and for the most part, are happy with it.
“This will set us up for the next 30 years, it’s a once in a generation project.”
Fellow councillor Clint Marsh believes revitalising the town centre is important for its image as one of the food bowl areas of the state.
“I believe this will be the gem of the region,” Clint said.
“Unlocking this is the gem of the northern Adelaide food bowl.
“I’d like Virginia to take that mantle, and the elected members have shown their support.”
Councillor Cathy-Jo Tame hopes the much needed upgrades will create a more family friendly environment and improve access for people with disabilities.
COP has also included additional funding for this project in its Draft 2020/21 Annual Business Plan and Budget.
More information on the Virginia Main Street Project can be accessed by visiting council’s website https://playford.engagementhub.com.au/virginia-main-street-upgrade