The old station building in the northern Victorian town of Dingee has been transformed into a new community library, following $500,000 of renovations works carried out over recent months.
The formerly vacant building, located on the Swan Hill Line, was opened at a community event attended by state transport minister Jacinta Allan.
“This new library will be a huge asset to the Dingee community — providing them with a place to meet and learn in the heart of the town,” Allan said.
“Conveniently located at the station, the new library is easily accessible to everyone and avoids the need for people to make the trip into Bendigo to visit the library.”
It is the first permanent library for the town of Dingee, which previously relied upon a mobile library service.
Loddon Shire Council has sub-leased the building to the Dingee and District Country Women’s Association and Goldfields Library Corporation, both of which now manage the library and meeting space.
“The Goldfields Library Corporation will rotate stock from other libraries, so the people of Dingee will always have access to new books and information – vital resources to help the regional town to continue to thrive,” Allan said.
The refurbishment works were carried out by FNG Group, a Bendigo-based company, and the heritage architects Quadratum Architecture, and included structural repairs to the floor and walls, restoration of heritage features, and the construction of accessibility features, such as external ramps and accessible toilets.
The project was managed by Victorian rail asset owner VicTrack through their Community Use of Vacant Rail Buildings Program, which provides $1.5 million every year to restore disused railway buildings. Work under the program was completed earlier in the year at Avoca Station, while works are currently underway at Willaura Station.