A $1.6 million cultural centre showcasing Murgon’s important prehistoric links will herald a bright future for local tourism, jobs, and the community, Federal Member for Wide Bay Llew O’Brien said today.
Murgon’s Country Creative Association will receive $1,596,514 through the Morrison Government’s Building Better Regions Fund to construct a purpose-built cultural centre which is set to include an art gallery, fossil museum, art workshop, gift shop, and central prehistoric garden.
“This is a bold, innovative project that will capitalise on Murgon’s position as a significant Australian paleontological site, and will provide ongoing tourism and economic benefit for the community and the wider South Burnett region,” Mr O’Brien said.
Murgon is the only site in Australia with a range of vertebrate fossils dating from the early Paleogene Period 55 million years ago, which is considered a crucial time in mammalian evolution and is of special interest to professional and amateur palaeontologists.
“This project will create immediate benefit with jobs during the planning and construction phase,” Mr O’Brien said.
“A project of this scale will transform Murgon, and ensure it remains strong, resilient and prosperous in the long term.
“I commend the project’s planners and backers including Richard O’Neill, Leo Geraghty, and Kathy Duff; and I look forward to seeing the new Cultural Centre becoming a focal point for community activity and a significant tourist attraction boosting economic prosperity, and creating jobs and new opportunities in our region.”
The Murgon Cultural Centre was one of five projects in Wide Bay to share in $1.8 million through Round 5 of the Building Better Regions Program, with other projects including $60,000 for the Noosa Alive arts and cultural festival; $42,539 for Noosa disability service Sunshine Butterflies; $20,000 to upgrade the 30-year-old toilets and showers at the Cooroy Badminton Club Hall; and $140,000 to construct a new educational and activity centre at Hope Reins in Gympie.