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Architects appointed for Cairns Cultural Precinct

Architects appointed for Cairns Cultural Precinct
April 14, 2011

After an exhaustive competitive selection process, Cairns Regional Council has approved CA Cox Rayner as the architectural team to design the Cairns Cultural Precinct.

Brisbane-based Cox Rayner teamed with Cairns firm CA Architecture to submit the winning tender in a process that attracted submissions from around the world.

Mayor Val Schier said the appointment of the team was an important milestone for the project and would soon provide the community with solid concept designs for comment and consultation, stating "this is an extremely significant appointment.

"This architectural team will firstly be responsible for developing concepts that meet the needs and desires of the community, and will offer both a practical and exciting solution to the project.

"From here, we will have the opportunity to work with highly-skilled professionals to develop design options that show the true potential of the site."

Expressions of interest for the project were called in December 2010. From there, eight teams were invited to interview and, further, a shortlist of four teams was asked to submit a tender.

The selection committee was led by State Architect, Philip Follent, and included President of the Queensland Chapter of the Australian Institute of Architects, Associate Professor Peter Skinner.

Follent explains that "the exemplary process that Council has undertaken is a model of fairness and foresight that other Councils can emulate.

"The assessment process and determination of CA Cox Rayner as the best design team for Cairns was undertaken on the basis of design criteria alone. Following this decision, the CA Cox team provided the most competitive fee proposal of all the four original short listed firms.

"In summary, the team's comprehensive submission, the commitment to the design of a first class precinct, the track record of attention to detail, cooperative relationships and experience in ï¾design and construct' project delivery and a passion to build Australia's first major wet tropics cultural centre, places CA Cox Rayner as the Assessment Panel's unanimously recommended team."

Mayor Schier thanked the assessment panel for their recommendation and said she looked forward to the next stage of the project's development, adding "once we start to see some visual concepts, we will have a clearer picture of just what this precinct can offer.

"It will also open the door for a thorough community consultation process to ensure a world-class and well-used entertainment hub."

Cox Rayner designed the Cairns Convention Centre and has been responsible for many award-winning projects in south-east Queensland.

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