There were cheers all round as people gathered to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the opening of Bowman Court in Crystal Brook on Friday afternoon.
Bowman Court forms part of the Crystal Brook District Retirement Village. The group also manages Eyre Court. The two courts boast affordable housing options for over 55s.
The court’s development came about after the successful completion of Eyre Court in 2003. The success of the five-unit Eyre Court complex inspired a rapid waiting list expansion.
The group searched for suitable land and eventually acquired the land on Bowman Street tenanted by SA Water and used as a construction camp facility.
While progress on Bowman Court was slow, even challenging at times, the group gained help from Fyfe Constructions for site plans and Loxton Council for housing plans.
Bettio Building Co won the tender process and, finally in 2006, clearing and building up of the site began.
The first residents moved in during August 2007 and all were in residence in the 12 units by the October of that year.
These residents all bought off-the-plan, such was their faith in the hard-working volunteer committee.
Speaking at the celebration, Crystal Brook District Retirement Village chairperson Dr Richard Mackinnon said the facility meant that local residents can now stay local.
”They don’t have to move out of our community and that allows those residents to still contribute to our community,” he said.
Dr Mackinnon paid tribute to the work done by Rae Porter, Di O’Dea and Jo Grossman over the course of Bowman Court’s history.
He also praised the original residents for having faith in the development.
“This would never had happened if the original residents did not have faith in the fact that these units could be built,” he said.
As they were a genuine not-for-profit organisation and wouldn’t have been able to borrow money for the project, the group called for interest from the residents and Dr Mackinnon said 12 put money up to have the units built.
Councillor Neville Wilson said the community was lucky to have a facility like Bowman Court.
“It is, as Richard quite rightly said, a very niche part of the whole gamut of facilities that we need within our community,” he said.
“We couldn’t get anything better than this.”
“The committee is to be congratulated on the great work they’ve done over a considerable period of time.”
Frome MP Geoff Brock told the gathering what the group had at Bowman Court rivals anything in Adelaide or any other capital city.