Fairfield eco-centre gets boost

LIBBY WILSON
Last updated 14:05 30/07/2014
the fairfield project
Supplied/The Fairfield Project.

ECOLOGY HUB: A sustainable education centre is proposed for Fairfield College land which may otherwise be sold.

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The bid for a sustainable education centre at Fairfield College has been aided by a $15,000 research grant.

"I continue to be inspired by this [Fairfield Project]. It's gathered its own momentum," chair Vic Arcus said.

The idea for the Fairfield Project - a science and ecology-based education centre bordering the Kukutaruhe gully system - was pulled together in a matter of months by a specially-formed community group.

It aimed to provide the educational rationale Fairfield College needed in order to retain "surplus land", which the school had said it might have to sell.

In May the college's board of trustees gave the group extra time to expand on its idea, details of which are on the Fairfield Project website.

Arcus was delighted the Bryant Trust granted $15,000 for a project feasibility study. Securing the funding was " critical to our success in getting a document together that can persuade the school and the ministry that we have a viable project," he said.

An experienced researcher would be hired for the study, that would cover areas including cost, centre governance, benefits for Fairfield College, community relationships and a project timeline.

And the group was further buoyed by an "encouraging meeting" with Ministry of Education property managers, Arcus said. "We came away from that meeting feeling very confident that what we were proposing was possible in principle."

The case will be presented to the college's board of trustees on December 1.

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- Waikato Times

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