Rolleston centre to become hub for youth arts and community

$300,000 will be spent on the Rolleston Community Centre to add more capabilities and usable...
$300,000 will be spent on the Rolleston Community Centre to add more capabilities and usable space. Photo: Supplied
The Rolleston Community Centre will now become a dedicated space for youth, arts, and community groups.

The centre, which was built in 1999 following a community-led effort by the Rolleston Residents Association, has seen a number of changes in recent years as its main purpose has evolved.

The centre used to be home to the library and sports centre, both of which have found new homes in Te Ara Ātea  and Selwyn Sports Centre.

In June the old library space was repurposed, becoming home to the Selwyn Youth Hub, with it being used by youth support groups during the week.

Over the past year council staff have been monitoring who uses the space and what for, in order to determine what the space should be used for in the future.

Throughout that time more than 49,000 people have used the centre for a range of activities, including religious groups, dance and music groups, and other community groups.

In the current LTP (2021-31) $443,000 is allocated to the centre’s refurbishment.

Now $300,000 of it will used for non-structural changes which include creating duel spaces in the stadium area, purchasing portable staging, carpeting, lighting, and replacing garage doors at the back of the centre with sliding doors to create an extra space.

The remaining $143,000 will be split into two lots of $71,500 which will be used to conduct a needs assessment process, the first in 2025/26 and the second in 2026/27, to find out what the Rolleston community wants going forward and whether a second community centre will need to be built on the eastern side of the town.

Currently $8.5 million is being budgeted for either a new centre or rebuilding the existing one as part of the 2024-34 Long Term Plan.

If after the assessment a decision is made to retain the existing centre to meet community growth needs, it will need earthquake strengthening, a replacement roof and its seals, front entrance remedial works, and other structural changes to meet the community needs.