Works Begin On Melbourne Arts Precinct

VIC Premier

The Andrews Labor Government is getting on with delivering the landmark Melbourne Arts Precinct transformation as early works get under way.

Delivering new cafes, restaurants and 18,000 square metres of new public parklands in the heart of Melbourne, the $1.7 billion Melbourne Arts Precinct transformation also includes extensive refurbishment of Victoria’s State Theatre and creation of the project centrepiece The Fox: NGV Contemporary.

The early works contract has been awarded to Lendlease and will deliver more than 100 jobs in just the preliminary stage of the project, laying essential groundwork ahead of major construction next year.

Beginning in June and continuing into 2023, the early works will see the relocation of critical shared utilities and services to ensure continued operation of NGV and Arts Centre Melbourne during construction. Preliminary works will also include site investigations and ground testing.

The works are vital to support the significant refurbishment of the State Theatre, which will include improved accessibility and acoustics, new hospitality destinations and upgraded back-of-house facilities including new rehearsal spaces and loading docks for larger productions.

Refurbishment of the State Theatre will also include important works on the building’s uniquely engineered foundation and basement structure.

More than 11,000 jobs will be created over the life of the Melbourne Arts Precinct transformation and the reimagined precinct will generate hundreds of ongoing creative sector jobs when it opens in 2028.

The Labor Government is backing the creative sector at all levels, with the Victorian Budget 2022/23 announced last week providing $245.8 million to support workers, businesses and institutions.

Arts Centre Melbourne and six other cultural icons including Museums Victoria, NGV and State Library Victoria will share in $127.4 million to support a strong recovery after two years of disruption due to the pandemic.

Footscray Community Arts and Castlemaine Art Museum are among smaller organisations which will share a $17.5 million allocation to improve facilities for audiences and artists.

As stated by Minister for Creative Industries Danny Pearson

“Victoria is known as the creative state for a reason – our galleries, museums, libraries, music venues, theatres and festivals bring millions of people here every year, helping grow our economy and create jobs.”

“These early works will deliver hundreds of jobs and signify the beginning of an exciting new era for the state’s creative sector.”

“Victorians love the arts precinct and it has served us well – but the transformation will take that to a new plane, entertaining and illuminating us for decades to come and bringing visitors from around the world.”

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