In the summer of 2020, the Rotary Club of Truro engaged Portapique residents to understand how the Club could help, what they would like to see in the area, and what opportunities existed. A focus group was held in July 2020 where residents were asked their opinions about the development of services within the existing Community Hall (which stood on that property for more than 175 years), their satisfaction with services, and what particular services were needed. During this stage, a clear vision was set: making the existing Community Hall fully accessible; and expanding the current building so it may be rented for events like meetings, weddings, or dances. Also, the addition of a proper outside play area for the community’s children was determined to be of great importance. Residents were excited about the project, not only for the physical improvements to be made, but even more so for the opportunity to come together with their neighbours and begin the healing process.
Since that time, the Trustees of the Riverside Community Hall (the current legally registered name of Portapique Community Hall) in concert with Cobequid Consulting have designed and constructed a natural playground which was completed between April and October 2021. A new, larger community centre will replace the small building which stood on that property for more than 175 years. The former hall needed significant repairs to bring it to code, and it was not possible to expand the building due to its proximity to the road and property line. Therefore, the decision was made to disassemble the former hall (with the original beams to be incorporated into the new hall) and build a new facility which will provide a location for the community to come together for suppers, dances, yoga and other fitness classes, youth programming, and much more! Many organizations have come forward, interested in hosting events and programming in the community centre; already we’ve had two summers of programming through the MacPhee Centre for Creative Learning in Dartmouth with much more to come!
The new community centre is now under construction, with the foundation and floor being poured summer/fall 2022, and framing starting in March 2023. The goal is to have it completed for Fall 2023 and we need your help! With the increased cost of construction materials, there is a funding gap of $50,000.
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