The Victorian Coalition Government has invested $7.5 million into the redevelopment of the Chalet. The last few weeks have seen the design team from MGS Architects working closely with Parks Victoria to put together detailed designs in line with the plans approved by Heritage Victoria. This phase involves carefully putting every detail into the plans from power and waste water plant specifications to interior timber finishes, textures and colours to meet heritage requirements.
Documents for the project will be put to the market for tender later in the year. In the meantime, experienced commercial builders have been invited to express their interest in being head contractor for the renovation of the historic Mount Buffalo Chalet. This process is now closed and successful firms will be short listed by Parks Victoria and invited to participate in a select tender process which will ultimately award the building contract.
The Mount Buffalo Chalet Community Forum has now met four times and as expected is proving to be a very active and enthusiastic group, proving and important community link to the project. As well as advising Parks Victoria, members have been briefing other logal groups and actively contributing updates through social media. The Mount Buffalo Chalet Lost History Facebook site has been developed by members and is attracting lots of interest with people posting some fascinating insights into the past. Members have also been looking at various ways oif celebrating the history and re-opening of The Chalet and have offered to assist Parks Victoria with the development of a Heritage Interpretation Plan.
There are thousands of items, including furniture and tools and equipment that will be used to refurbish and manage the Chalet when it is reopened. Properly recording and securely storing thes items as well as determining what is in excess to need and available for the community has been a massive undertaking over the last few months. All items of heritage value kept for refurbishment have now been recorded, catalogued and secured. They are stored carefully on site or the most sensitive items removed to proper archive storage. Some items such as the grand piano and billiard table have has a box built around them to protect them during the building restoration works.
Some regional not for profit organisations have taken up the offer from Parks Victoria to have items that will assist their operations. They have gone in particular to groups offering opportunities for under privileged youth to experience the mountains.
For more information visit: www.parks.vic.gov.au or call 13 1963