A BOLD plan to put Rand on the map is now in the national spotlight.
Corowa-based Regional Design Service gained a Good Design Award Gold Accolade midweek in the Architectural Design, Urban Design and Public Spaces category for outstanding design and innovation on its Plan Rand project.
Commissioned by the Rand Town Improvement Committee, Regional Design Service co-designed and delivered Plan Rand, a blueprint for Rand residents to use when applying for government grants.
It was instrumental in gaining Federation Council drought funding last year, rejuvenating the town centre and crystallizing future priorities.
Nine properties have sold at Rand, valued at about $1.6 million, since January 2019.
Regional Design Service co-director and designer Aaron Nicholls said he was incredibly proud of Plan Rand, which came out of a community meeting in the town during 2018.
Together with co-director Phillip Nielsen, Mr Nicholls said they joined the meeting because they wanted to put something back into the rural community.
"My mum was born at Rand and I have a long family history at Rand; my ancestors arrived there in the 1920s," he said.
"We identified with little townships like that; that didn't have a lot of help to drive things forward.
"Rand was formerly part of the Urana Shire, bordering with Corowa Shire, until it merged in the Federation Shire.
"Following the merger we wanted to put it on the map for the Federation Shire."
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Mr Nicholls said Plan Rand had been a success on many levels.
He said the community was awarded almost 25 per cent of Federation Council region's $1 million drought funding in 2019.
The town gained upgrades to accessible amenities in two community venues, engaged a landscape architect to deliver a plan for the new railway corridor parklands and finished other town improvements.
"To get 25 per cent of the funding for a township that size is testament to having done the research and getting all of your ducks in a row," Mr Nicholls said.
Good Design Australia chief executive Dr Brandon Gien said a record number of entries were received in the awards this year.
"Australia's Good Design Award is more than a symbol of design excellence - it represents the hard work and dedication towards an innovative outcome that will ultimately make our lives better," he said.
"These projects showcase the sheer brilliance of design and the potential it has to improve our world."
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