Darwin To Gain A New Museum On Stella Maris Site

Darwin To Gain A New Museum On Stella Maris Site

Northern Territory Minister for Lands and Planning David Tollner

NT Government Grants 10 Year Lease To National Trust Of Australia At Stella Maris Site

Victor P Taffa

The NT Government has offered the National Trust of Australia (Northern Territory) a 10 year lease to operate a museum at the Stella Maris site in McMinn Street.

Lands and Planning Minister David Tollner said National Trust has held a long standing interest in the site and the Trust’s plans to run a museum would be a welcome attraction in Darwin.

“The National Trust was announced as the preferred proponent for the whole Stella Maris site for a low-scale community and commercial site in 2014.” Mr. Tollner said.

“National Trust NT has now decided to utilise only the area of the site that contains the Old Railway House, where it will establish a museum.”

“The museum will celebrate the story of the railway and the waterfront together with the surveying of the Territory beginning with Goyder.” National Trust (NT) Director Elizabeth Close said.

“We hope to open the museum to visitors during the National Trust Heritage Festival, which runs from 16-24 April.”

An area adjacent to the museum will also be licensed to the National Trust NT for use as a car park.

The remainder of the site will now be available for applications via the community land grant scheme.

This scheme provides for the sale and allocation of land for eligible groups for community purposes.

The remaining portion comprises around 1500 sqm and includes two buildings which could be used for commercial and/or community purposes.

“Territorians were almost robbed of an iconic and valuable public asset when the previous Labor Government chose to hand over the Stella Maris site to Unions NT without an expression of interest process.” Mr. Tollner said.

“The Country Liberals Government stood up for Territorians by saying no to Unions NT and their dodgy deal with Labor to use this iconic Darwin site.”

“We’re pleased that the Stella Maris site will now be used for a purpose that provides a benefit to the community and we look forward to the opening of the museum.” Mr. Tollner said.