Local tradespeople are set to benefit when works begin on the Little Malop Street stage of Geelong Arts Centre’s transformation. The Victorian Government has announced the appointment of Australian property company Lendlease to deliver the $128 million project.
“Geelong Arts Centre’s Little Malop Street transformation will bring new jobs, economic activity and opportunities to the region – during its construction phase and beyond,” said Minister for Creative Industries Martin Foley.
Lendlease’s “Geelong First” commitment will put local partnerships, skills and innovation at the heart of the project. It will ensure that local suppliers and tradespeople are invited to tender on works packages throughout construction, including local social enterprises. Lendlease will participate in the GROW initiative that works to reduce unemployment and promote the social prosperity of the region.
“This is a unique opportunity to once again partner with Development Victoria and deliver an arts precinct of the highest standard for Victoria’s second largest city,” said Bill Alexandrakis, General Manager, Lendlease Building, Victoria.
“In doing so we will bring a breadth of opportunity for Geelong’s local suppliers and trades. Our ‘Geelong First’ commitment will ensure that both local suppliers and tradespeople are invited to tender on works packages throughout construction, bringing an economic boost to the city.”
Lendlease has a long history of delivering major cultural projects throughout Australia, including Arts Centre Melbourne’s Hamer Hall, Melbourne Recital Centre, Melbourne Theatre Company and University of Melbourne’s Ian Potter Southbank Centre.
“We are delighted that the Little Malop Street Redevelopment will be a driver for work for Geelong’s network of quality local suppliers, contractors and organisations,” said Geelong Arts Centre CEO, Joel McGuinness. “We look forward to connecting the Geelong community with opportunities through Lendlease and delivering an iconic and beautiful cultural asset for Geelong.”
Funded by the Victorian Government, Geelong Arts Centre’s Little Malop Street Redevelopment will completely transform the existing building, providing new performance venues, vibrant new indoor and outdoor areas, dining options, box office and front and back of house facilities.
Designed by award-winning Victorian architects ARM, it is set to be another striking addition to Geelong’s cultural landscape, furthering the city’s reputation as a UNESCO City of Design. The project design is being informed by the guidance of the Traditional Owners, the Wadawurrung people, to ensure that their history, culture and connected to the site are clearly reflected in the new centre.
Lendlease will now commence a period of investigation and planning to further develop the design and plan construction. Works are scheduled to get under way on site in late 2020 and the new centre is expected to open by 2023.
Image: Little Malop Street Frontage – Geelong Arts Centre (supplied)