In addition to the clubs successes on the water this year, we have also been ’clinking’ off the water as well. As many of you know the club has been working on a number of different, yet converging issues,
regarding renewal of our lease, a precinct management plan, a club liquor licence and of course a major redevelopment of the clubhouse. Over the last 6-months in particular the committee has made
significant headway in achieving our desired outcomes.
Next month, 29 May 2012, the Melbourne City Council will consider the RRC draft ‘head lease’ along with our neighbouring clubs proposed head leases. In addition they will also give consideration to the
draft MLC ‘sub-lease’. The draft leases propose a new term of 21 years, which depending when they are executed (current lease expires in 2014) will take RRC and MLC through to 2035!
I can’t tell you how excited I am that we are finally at this stage. For those that know the story you would recognise it hasn’t been an easy road. Derek Begg and Martin Foster have predominately been
working on this, as well as the other parts of the jigsaw, over the last couple of years with the other Yarra based clubs. Late last year Lucy Crunden, Franziska Locher and I also joined the cause.
Between us, and the committee more broadly, we have worked closely with the City of Melbourne (CoM), the other clubs and MLC to reach in principle agreement that everyone was comfortable with. Originally it
was intended that all head leases would be considered and agreed upon before the sub-leases. However in recognition of the RRC redevelopment project, and the confirmation of lease tenure required by MLC before
proceeding with the building works, CoM have expedited the discussion about the MLC sub-lease, so they will be considered simultaneously.
While it is difficult to advise of a final date, when we will have a signed copy of the lease in our hand, it certainly looks to be well advanced by August. Consequently this means its full steam ahead with
the redevelopment project. Franzi (resident Architect) and Liz Sheil (resident Engineer) are leading the design phase, and eventual build stage on the behalf of the club. They are working with FMSA Architects who have been engaged for the project.
In order to keep on top of the above there are a myriad of regular meetings with MLC, FMSA, CoM and the other clubs to ensure we keep the momentum up and moving in the right direction. It’s been a big team
effort, but I would like to give special thanks to all those named in this email and enabling the club to get this far.
While there is certainly cause for celebration we still have a long road ahead of us – where many more hands will be required to make things happen, such as fundraising, moving boats and managing around
the building works. Although it is understood that MLC will provide the major source of funding, RRC will also be contributing. The committee has set aside monies for the project, however we will need
to bolster these funds over the coming year. A donation scheme, similar to that held for the last renovation, will be established and we will start calling for donations soon. The committee is also exploring other ideas for fundraising, and as always would welcome any suggestions from the membership.
I’ll keep you posted on how the Council’s meeting on 29 May goes. In the meantime if you have any questions regarding the detail of the draft lease or redevelopment project please let me know.
President – Richmond Rowing Club