Putting cash to good use with brand new community centre

Overton Community Centre could be set to be rebuilt.
Overton Community Centre could be set to be rebuilt.

Ambitious plans to build a brand new Overton Community Centre in Kirkcaldy were revealed to councillors yesterday (Wednesday).

However, the project is still in the very early stages, and consultation with members of the Overton Management Committee is still to take place.

During a report on the success of the Gallatown Regeneration Plan, Izzy Whyte, local development officer, explained that following consideration of the first set of plans for refurbishment of the centre, the option of completely rebuilding had been proposed.

After a meeting with an architect last week, the option of building a whole new modular building – a modern type of pre-fab – had proved to be less expensive than completely renovating the existing building.

During discussions with the community, it was decided that a new kitchen and redevelopment of rooms behind the stage would make the building more suitable, but after considering costs, it was found that this work would bring the budget over the current estimates, making the option of rebuilding not only viable but much more cost effective.

Officers were successful in securing funding of £950,000 through the Scottish Capital Regeration Fund in 2013, which is being used to construct the Gallatown Gateway, and will create a Gallatown Community Campus of existing facilities, including the centre.

Izzy explained no timetable had yet been set out, but they were hoping work could start as soon as possible.

The news was welcomed by Councillor Lawrence Brown.

“It’s great to see all of the work being done up there in a community which was quite negative before, but is now very positive.”

Cllr Brown also commented on the number of groups now using the centre, and asked for assurances that during refurbishment or rebuild , all of these would be accommodated elsewhere.

Izzy confirmed that this had already been taken into account, and should the option of a complete rebuild be taken forward, it would actually mean a quicker result for all of the groups involved.

Cllr Neil Crooks, chairman of the committee, said it was important the community was consulted about the plans.

“It’s important they know what the options are so they can decide what the best one is for them.

“We took the right decision as a committee to invest in these local development officers to bring all of these plans to life, and I think this next stage will be quite critical.

“The fact that we could be designing a whole new building for the community is really quite exciting.”