Oberon locals will soon have a dynamic public space to enjoy literature, culture and the arts while accessing the latest technology, thanks to funding to deliver a new, digitally connected community hub from the NSW Nationals in Government.

NSW Nationals Member for Bathurst Paul Toole announced $3 million from the Government’s $170 million Drought Stimulus Package to expand the Oberon Library and redevelop the precinct with function, meeting and exhibition spaces as well as an area dedicated to youth.

Mr Toole said the new hub will be a vibrant setting in which locals can read books, write and enjoy art or use high-speed internet to study or facilitate business meetings.

“This funding will help to deliver a place for people of all ages and interests to connect with others, whether that is through learning about culture and art, catching up with friends or growing a business network,” Mr Toole said.

Oberon Community Hub will support small business operators in the region who will be able to drop in and efficiently manage orders online or pay bills, it will also mean young people won’t have to move away to get an education.

“When work is complete, one building at 13 Fleming Street will house the library and community technology centre alongside other bookable spaces, making the facilities easy to access if you are spending time in the Oberon CBD,” Mr Toole said.

Deputy Premier and NSW Nationals Leader John Barilaro said the Community Hub was funded by the Drought Stimulus Package, which was also providing grants to support Country Shows across regional NSW.

“This project will provide an immediate boost, creating work for locals so that money earned in the region stays in the region, as well as helping with long-term growth because of the new infrastructure that will be in place,” Mr Barilaro said.

As of February 2020, more than $1.9 billion had been committed to the Emergency Drought Relief package to help farmers and regional communities, on top of the $1 billion Safe and Secure Water program which is delivering water infrastructure that boosts drought resilience.