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May 222018

Kuranui College will be home to a new community multi-sport and clubroom facility to service the entire South Wairarapa community, if the council agree to partner with the college to make it a reality.

South Wairarapa District Council is considering a proposal to fund a feasibility study for an indoor sport facility and sports hub on the grounds of the college, following a submission made by Kuranui’s Board of Trustees, with strong backing from Sport NZ, Greytown Trust Lands Trust and Greytown Sport and Leisure.

Sports Facility

Photo: Dave Lintott

The existing 831sqm Kuranui College gym is a ‘leaky’ building with earthquake issues and is too small to meet current and future demand. The Ministry of Education has indicated that they are willing to repair or rebuild 556sqm of the gym, but Kuranui doesn’t have funds to do the same to the remaining 275sqm, which is community-owned.

The Kuranui Board believes that the $2 million cost of these repairs could be better invested towards building a new state-of-the-art sports facility, which would serve the entire community.

Belinda Cordwell, Chair of the Kuranui Board of Trustees, feels this is an opportunity too good to be missed. “Kuranui is at the very heart of the South Wairarapa community, with 80% of students bussing to the college from all across the district,” she explained.

“The current situation presents a once in a generation opportunity for several local and national agencies to collaborate to build an indoor sport/clubroom facility to benefit the South Wairarapa community as a whole. To invest $2million to repair and reduce the size of Kuranui’s gym, which is already too small to meet the current requirements of our stakeholders, is clearly not a path the Board of Trustees wish to go down.”

“Sports participation is increasing rapidly in Greytown, but there are not enough facilities for existing clubs and teams, in addition to the growing needs of our school. Multi-use sports ‘hubs’ are where developments are heading all across NZ, and we are very fortunate that the Ministry of Education is open to providing land for a community facility free of charge.”

Greytown Trust Lands Trust (GTLT), which funds sport and the promotion of education in the town, is keen to become a project partner. “GTLT is looking towards this kind of long-term partnership and funding ongoing maintenance and management, rather than large capital projects going forward,” said Chairman Sid Kempton. “This is a very exciting project for Greytown, which we are keen to support as it will make a huge impact in our community.”

The Sport NZ submission to the South Wairarapa District Council Long-Term Plan, highlighted the benefits of an active community. “There is a strong link between sport, improved social capital, social cohesion and community identity,” it stated. “There is a positive association between physical activity and academic achievement and we’re very supportive of this project.”