RDAF Funding Unlocks Civic Partnership Investment

Regional Australia Minister Simon Crean today announced a $6 million Regional Development Australia Fund (RDAF) grant for a civic centre revitalisation project in Dandenong that will leverage $62 million in partnership investment.

Regional Australia Minister Simon Crean today announced a $6 million Regional Development Australia Fund (RDAF) grant for a civic centre revitalisation project in Dandenong that will leverage $62 million in partnership investment.

In Dandenong today with Member for Isaacs Mark Dreyfus, Mr Crean said the revitalised civic centre will cement Dandenong's reputation as an important regional hub for Victoria and generate economic and social dividends.

"The Dandenong Connects project is a great example of the three levels of government working in partnership to get a project up and running," he said.

"This project stacks up and joins the dots between addressing local priorities, leveraging other funding sources and sustaining the economic and social future of the region.

"Dandenong is known as Melbourne's ‘second-city' with a population of around 140,000, and the region is projected to grow by another 210,000 over the next 20 years.

"This project will equip the region with the facilities needed to grow economic activity, while providing the community with important social infrastructure that improves liveability."

Mr Crean said the project includes construction of Civic Square, a regional library and a conference centre accessible to both the community and business.

"The Civic Square will provide facilities for up to 2500 people, with an exhibition space, big screen, stage, tiered seating, landscaping and public amenities," he said.

"The project will create an estimated 63 jobs each year in the retail and hospitality industry and the multiplier of this direct employment will generate another 24 jobs per year."

Mr Dreyfus congratulated the City of Greater Dandenong for delivering a project that ticked all the regional development boxes.

"This community infrastructure will make an important contribution to the region as it continues to grow and act as a central business hub for regions right across Victoria," he said.

"Projects such as this have been selected for RDAF funding because they leverage funding and demonstrate clear long-term regional benefits, including jobs and opportunities for the broader region.

"The new library is a big win for the Dandenong community with extended opening hours and new facilities that provide the space needed to deliver education and training programs."

Mr Crean said the second round of the $1 billion RDAF will invest $200 million in projects across Australia, including $38.8 million for nine projects in Victoria with a total value of more than $168 million.

"RDAF is part of our Government's record $4.3 billion investments in regional health and hospitals, skills, higher education and infrastructure," Mr Crean said.

"With our economy in transition, we have strengthened the role of the nation's 55 Regional Development Australia committees, which played a vital role in working with the community to identify and prioritise projects.

"Round Two of RDAF builds on the $150 million distributed to 35 projects through Round One last year including $36.06 in Victoria under RDAF Round One."

More information on the Regional Development Australia Fund can be found at http://www.regional.gov.au/