Community celebrates opening of new Hub

Issued Monday 20 November 2017

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A huge crowd turned out to celebrate the opening of Selandra Community Hub on Saturday 18 November, with a unique piece of artwork also unveiled to the public.

The Selandra Community Hub is a $6.56m project delivered for the growing Clyde North community and includes meeting rooms, consulting suites, a large foyer, exhibition space and a commercial kitchen, as well as an outdoor community space, Selandra Square.

City of Casey Mayor Cr Geoff Ablett said the new Hub will be a fantastic addition to the Clyde North community, and encouraged residents to take advantage of their new facilities.

“This development is one of the ways in which Council is delivering on its ongoing commitment to invest in the development of infrastructure to enable our community to meet, learn, play and connect,” he said.

“This precinct also incorporates the Selandra Square which creates a vibrant community space for outdoor community activities and events, and can be used as an informal meeting place for residents.”

An exciting aspect of the project is the public art installation ‘Touchstone’, a design that is unique to Selandra Community Hub, and was a collaborative project between the City of Casey and RMIT.

Described as having a brain, the interactive piece is a major feature of the precinct and according to Jordan Lacey, a Research Fellow of Architecture and Design at RMIT, there aren’t many pieces like this across the world.

“This is extremely unique, and hopefully something that the suburb is proud of because there aren’t many artworks like this in the world. The way it is integrated with the surrounding landscape is quite unusual,” Mr Lacey said.

Mr Lacey led the Augmented Landscape Laboratory team from RMIT who worked on the project for 18 months. Touchstone has been programmed to register people’s touch, remembers interaction and responds through various elements including vibrations, sound and light.

The Selandra Rise community were invited to submit their feedback about what sounds best reflect their community. These sounds were then captured by sound recordists and programmed into the artwork, so at dusk each day the Touchstone will choose two field recordings and play these out loud.

Mr Lacey said this was a fantastic way to involve the community in the development of the project.

“The community responded with a huge amount of information, and we hope to continue working with Council to discover further ways of involving the community in arts projects such as these,” he said.

This project was funded by Council ($4.06m) and the State Government ($2.5m through the Interface Growth Fund).

The Selandra Community Hub is located at 7–11 Selandra Boulevard, Clyde North.