Pullen Centre: par excellence

By Emma Cornford

It's official ? the refurbished Pullen Centre in Prince Street Grafton is excellent.

Clarence Valley Community Programs last night picked up the top Excellence Award for the centre in the government/community category of the Northern Rivers Urban Design Awards (NRUDA) for their work with the building.

The refurbished Pullen Centre, which was formerly the home of Pullen family produce store, was reopened on July 5 last year.

In their comments, judges said the win was due to the centre's superb interaction with the old building and strong commitment to the community.

"It is a superb example of the adaption, reuse and material salvage," they said.

"It saved one side of a block of the main street, which may well have been lost.

"It was a win, win, win project."

Maclean's Witzig Gallery also picked up an award, taking home a commendation in the commercial category.

According to the judges, the gallery presented a 'excellent example of contemporary design'.

"The Witzig Gallery is a very good artistic entry ... that draws inspiration from a traditional style," they said in their comments.

NRUDA director Steve Connelly said there were a number of criteria against which each entry was judged.

"It's all about how well the building implements the concept they're working on and how it respects the history and environment ... and the way it fits into its community and the environment," Mr Donnelly said.

"An excellence award is really the highest they can get."

Other Clarence Valley finalists in the government/community section of the awards included the new McAuley Catholic College campus at Clarenza and the Westpac Lifesaver Rescue Helicopter helipad at Mac- lean Hospital.

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