Final touches for CSC

The redevelopment of Castlemaine Secondary College is fast nearing completion with contractors Fairbrother Construction just weeks away from putting the final touches on the new-look school.
The redevelopment has been a decade in the making with planning for the ambitious four-stage project beginning back in 2010 and the first stage – the Wellbeing Precinct – commencing in 2011.
Stage two’s Engineers Precinct was competed in 2016 and with the remaining funds the college was able to commence stage three’s Performers Precinct.
In 2018 the college was awarded a further $11.75 million to complete the remainder of the extension of stage three and undertake stage four construction of the new Administration and Artisans buildings.
The keys to the new admin building, library and Performers Precinct spaces were delivered ahead of schedule at the beginning of third term in July this year.
The last of the former 1960s Castlemaine High School buildings came down during lockdown in September.
The college received the handover of the last building – the Artisans Precinct – just before the recent commencement of fourth term and the return of in-school learning.
All that remains now is for the contractors to complete landscaping works to see the central space, where the former 200 and 300 blocks once stood, transformed into an inviting outdoor space for students to gather.
CSC assistant principal Justin Hird took the Express on a tour of the new buildings.
The sprawling Artisans Precinct includes a media lab complete with darkroom, textiles and art spaces, general-purpose classrooms complete with audio visual screens, a separate wing dedicated specifically to the school’s Steiner program and a new-look canteen.
Artisans, the largest of the four precincts to date, includes smaller classroom spaces where students can work on individual or small group projects and display areas where textile and artworks can be placed on exhibition.
“The whole school community has had input into the redevelopment and what the school would look like and can take great pride in the finished product and the functional and versatile new spaces that will serve our students and the local community for many, many years to come,” Mr Hird said.
Once the major project is completed the school will look to refresh its tired Music Centre, which is the last of the existing buildings to be retained.
“The school community fundraised to purchase the two portables to create the Music Centre and therefore the school owns these and wanted to keep them,” Mr Hird said.
“The buildings will be fitted with new cladding to revitalise them and see them tie in with the school’s new-look precincts.”
Bendigo West MP Maree Edwards has been a driving force behind the college’s redevelopment and said it was a credit to everyone involved.
“It’s been quite a journey to completion. However, the government’s commitment to completing this $12 million project (stage three) on time and on budget has been achieved,” she said.
“I’m really grateful for the support that has been behind me delivering on this project. I know the Castlemaine Secondary College community is now looking to see what is next in terms of future development on the site, and I look forward to working with them to realise those plans.”

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