Another great idea for Orange
We love to hear from you our Orange City Life readers particularly when it’s people who share our vision for building a better Orange. In a recent edition (Put Orange First, March 7-13) our publisher Bob Holland lamented the lack of a permanent tourist attraction here to boost visitor numbers to the region outside of events and festivals. Well, this got reader Jeff Rogers thinking.
“I just read the article from Bob and thought I agree with that and I sat there thinking about it,” said Jeff, who before retiring ran his own company staging events for television.
Orange, he says, has a great lifestyle, people and climate and could be much more.
“Why couldn’t Orange be an ideas centre rather than being thought of as only a food and wine destination,” he said.
“I was thinking that Orange could position itself as an ideas city, a future city if you like. An innovation and development city with a view to accepting climate change and how we might best adapt to it through ideas and discovery.”
What Jeff proposes is setting up a ‘renewable energy park,’ somewhere between a research and education centre, showcasing and promoting different renewable energy technologies.
“Somewhere between Disneyland without the rides and a science park — that's what I had in mind,” said Jeff.
“This could be a place where people develop ideas but also a place where people, from children to all ages, come along and see what's happening and interact with it. I see it as an interactive place for tourists to come and see different renewable technologies and learn more about it.
“So, things like mini hydro, taking energy from waste — which is already being done on a limited scale, but a lot more of it that can be done — there are mini wind turbines you can put on your roof… it’s more than just solar panels or heat pumps.
“We have to move away from Coal eventually if we are serious about the environment and it is not a quick fix. Why don’t we look at something that is completely different, out of the square, if you like? Why not have a renewable energy park? And it could be something that grows, something that is inspirational, experimental, and innovative. It could be something really amazing.”
Editor: Over the last couple of years, Orange City Life has encouraged ideas like this and published many along the way. Many have been brilliant, but to date no one who may be in a position to take them to the next step appears to have done so. So, the question is – how do we get them to the next stage? Our Council seems bent on arranging and paying huge amounts to consultants from the City every time a bit of brainpower is needed. Isn’t it time our leaders started picking up on some of the great local ideas and put them to the test by at least putting them into the local discussion mix? We have some smart and thinking people among us, we have some great ideas floating around (like the one above), we just don’t have seem to have any leaders with the vision or interest in Orange moving on them.