Queanbeyan Cinema – more red tape

7captains 1 September 2014 14

Hi Rioters,

Unsure if you’ve been following the epic drama over the border in Queanbeyan.

In a nutshell, we’ve been clamouring for a cinema for 18 years, and it’s come to the boil for the last 6 months. Over this 6 month period, council has been provided with an opportunity and a space to build a cine-complex.

It’s been put to council, and for some reason it’s been rejected YET AGAIN. With some council members rejecting the proposal on the basis that an MOU has not been submitted by the provider- Metro cinemas. This despite (from my late interest this week in the Reel2redtape affair- the only “gates” I’m interested in this issue being a entering the cinema with my ticket pronto) information, presentations, cost estimates etc being presented to council for the last 6 months. As much that can be provided under an MOU without encrouching commercial in confidence information.

A cinema is what most Queaneyanites want and has been raised in many consumer surveys as a hot issue. Over the last month there have been 2 separate pages on Facebook, each attracting about 1200 likes, a petition of 500 signatures, and just this wednesday 9 out of the 14 public presentations at the local council meeting were over this issue. Not that you would think that there is so much public support FOR a cinema if you just base it on the usual Canberra Times and Queanbeyan Age reporting.

So the latest is that certain council members are stonewalling- yet again- on the issue, by adopting the “death by committee” approach. This despite that they’ve had 6months to 3 years to review feasibility studies; cost benefit analyses etc and if they had any concerns over the provider in this case Metro cinemas who have localities in Bathurst and Burnie- or having a cinema here- then surely this would have been raised 6 months ago.

It begs the question- why the delay? One of the council members was on 666am on wednesday night stating that he had no idea about Metro cinemas or that a cinema is warranted in the region. Really? You’ve had 6 months, and you can’t be bothered calling your equivalents in Bathurst or Burnie? You’ve not read the consumer surveys, it being such a hot topic on social media, and the 9/14 presenters this week who were passionate about the issue. You were;t there at any of the presentations that Metro cinemas provided etc. You weren’t there at any of the meetings??? It’s quite curious!!

Why the face-palm, the disrespectful sniggering amongst certain councillors while residents were providing their presentations at the meeting on Wednesday? Why disregard what residents of Queanbeyan have wanted- a cinema- yet again? Groundhog alright!

Who or what interests are they protecting? Why are these councillors not doing their job as representatives of people who have voted for them, but instead “doing a job” on the town itself?

We all want a cinema here, and we don’t want it further delayed by the usual stonewalling. Death by committees etc etc. What’s really going on? A bit of digging around by Canberra Times or Queanbeyan Age which they’ve not been interested in doing-because it requires actual work- might unearth the real reason.

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14 Responses to Queanbeyan Cinema – more red tape
tooltime tooltime 10:11 pm 23 Sep 14

That’s really great,

I totally agree – Its great to see new energetic entrepreneurs making things happen. They’ve got the tattoo shop and the new Burger joint in town, anyone else wanna do business with the Rebels?

SuperCity2620 SuperCity2620 5:26 pm 10 Sep 14

Reality check!
4th Seed has already sold – biz so good, new owners couldn’t get in there quick enough.
BENEDICT House (not Benedictine – they’re monks) didn’t SELL, it’s been leased and is about to reopen as an Arts Precinct.
The Royal, that’s right, it SOLD, meaning other smart business operators also see the potential.
New Indian/Pizza restaurant in Monaro St; new gift-type shop in Crawford St; Furlong House apartments just about sold out. Oh yeh, and what about all that money being spent on those other pubs as well? Must be someone with their fingers and toes crossed just HOPING they won’t go belly-up.
Don’t let those blinkers poke you in the eye.

tooltime tooltime 5:29 pm 05 Sep 14

Hey JBrow,

I’m assuming your talking about 4 seeds, the Crawford St brunch spot that opened 12 – 24 months ago? Guess what? Its for sale. $150k & it’s all yours.

Benedictine House? Sold about 6 months ago. The law firms commercial rent is backstopping the coffee shop.

The Royal hotel? It’s great now, post a $2-3 million dollar renovation in 2012. Oh but wait, oh guess what happened? That’s right, they sold it…Don’t get me started on the pokies…

If these are your best examples of thriving Queanbeyan businesses, why are they trading hands so quickly? Because they’re marginal businesses. But I’m sure you can singlehandedly rejuvenate the Crawford St lifestyle precinct….

SuperCity2620 SuperCity2620 10:16 am 04 Sep 14

C’mon, if you are going to try to get in on this debate, could you remove the ACT blinkers and see the population base outside your own borders??? What about places like Bungendore and Captains Flat and Wamboin and Sutton and soon to be Googong and Tralee. These are also who a cinema in Qbn would benefit.

JBrow JBrow 2:41 pm 03 Sep 14

I heard about this via Facebook. Funny to read some of the comments as some are not the intended target market- not cinema goers, and well the usual anti-queanbeyan stereotypes.

I also find that comment from the small business owner quite humorous. I just finished ordering a set of double glazed windows from a business in Melbourne. I rang 4 businesses yesterday- 1 in Melbourne, 1 in Sydney and 2 in Canberra.

Both interstate businesses called me back with a quote. The other 2 here in Canberra I’m still waiting to call me back!!!
I guess they (the canberra businesses) assume I was just tyre-kicking for a quote. Well that assumption cost $$$ that I could have spent locally. Slam-dunk, measure & quote & paid by the end of the day.

Not sure what sort of small business you own buddy, but I don’t see 3Seeds, Benedict House, the newly refurbished Royal Hotel complaining! And that new barber shop looks very cool!

We don’t want another reject shop, op shop, or coffee lounge. But another quality cafe/ wood fire pizza place like 3 seeds to mix it up, an artisan bakery (Autolyse come to Queanbeyan!!) and wow a cinema!

The only white elephants are the dinosaurs who still think we’re in 1993 that fail to realise the gentrification (slow but getting there) of Queanbeyan. And for that matter Canberra. Who would think with Lonsdale street!

tooltime tooltime 11:29 pm 01 Sep 14

C’mon Man:

The Q building is haemorrhaging money. Qbn council ratepayers are on the hook to the tune of $1200 A DAY for this white elephant. What makes you think this new project will be any different? My own research into Queanbeyan for my small business resulted in some interesting facts. There’s about 15,000 residential properties in town, and about 1500 Govt/community housing projects who wouldn’t pay any rates at all or a reduced tariff…do the maths on your rate bill.

That said, I do think a small 20 or 30 seat cinema offering a Dendy Premium Lounge experience might work. Refer to other comments about uneconomic ventures floated previously … Better yet , have cinema experiences at The Q – make it pay for itself.

Good Day All

HiddenDragon HiddenDragon 11:17 pm 01 Sep 14

Looking from across the border, I’m doing my best to feel your pain (I truly am), but the question I can’t get past is – can we please swap governments?

We have a government that can’t seem to say no to big ticket proposals, but yours seems somewhat more cautious (or is there a conspiracy theory we need to know about?).

BlueCollarGal BlueCollarGal 12:00 pm 01 Sep 14

I would support a drive-in without a problem!

The amount of freedom and privacy it gives you, whilst still being able to see the latest movies, has got to be of value to those parents with kids, the introverts and/or mobile phone addicts.

John Moulis John Moulis 10:09 am 01 Sep 14

“A cinema is what Queanbeyanites really want”

Oh really, tell that to the owners of the Star and Nova cinemas which both went broke in the 1970s and 1980s. Also tell that to local entrepreneur John McCready who tried to reopen the Nova in 1993 but had to close it again within a year due to heavy losses and a lack of patrons. And that was before the Net and DVDs! What will happen when this new proposal inevitably closes down? Will Queanbeyan ratepayers be forced to foot the bill for this white elephant?

MrPC MrPC 6:18 pm 31 Aug 14

The last thing we need is another derelict building in town. For the love of $DEITY, just find a field, put some gravel down, and put up a screen at each end. Maybe use the showgrounds, or that barely used land between the greek church and the riverside cemetary, or bulldoze a few warehouses in East or West Queanbeyan, or come to an MOU with the ACT for the land around the Sutton Road & Pialligo Avenue intersection, or put it in Googong.

A drive-in would get people into Queanbeyan, whereas one more boring multiplex within a few minutes drive of the existing multiplexes at Manuka, Civic, New Acton, Belconnen, Woden and Tuggeranong will fail dismally and will commit the council to a huge ongoing subsidy bill.

A drive-in would cost next to nothing to build, and if the takings from the admission and candy bar aren’t enough to cover a couple of employees and the rights for the movies, we’re not left with another white elephant derelict structure in town.

arescarti42 arescarti42 1:33 pm 31 Aug 14

Just pirate your movies off the internet and watch them at home like everyone else.

agent_clone agent_clone 11:33 am 31 Aug 14

I would say there is one significant difference between Bathurst and Burnie compared to Queanbeyan. The distance between Queanbeyan and the nearest cinema is about 15 minutes by car, the distance between either of those and the next larger town (I have no idea if the next larger town has cinemas) is 40 minutes or so. For that matter there are 6 cinemas within about 35 minutes of Queanbeyan, most of those being about 20 minutes or so.
Personally I don’t live in Queanbeyan and I only go to the cinema about once a year, so I have no feelings in regards to this.

Antagonist Antagonist 10:34 am 31 Aug 14

That’s funny. Poor Quangers!

Braidwood – population 1100. Has a cinema (16mm, but still a cinema!).
Narooma – population 2400. Has a ‘kinema’.
Cooma – population 6,300. Has a TWIN cinema!
Quangers – population 38,000. Pwaaaaahahahahaha!

Maybe the holdup is because Obeid’s are expanding into movies now …

gooterz gooterz 7:36 pm 30 Aug 14

They going to go colour straight away or start with black and white?
Welcome to 1950’s

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