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Work commences on new $20 million Goulburn Performing Arts Centre development

Work commences on new $20 million Goulburn Performing Arts Centre development
May 19, 2020

Six years on from the first proposal to re-purpose the former Goulburn Town Hall, construction on the project has now commenced.

Despite lengthy debate about the merit of the $20 million conversion of the historic Auburn Street site into the Goulburn Performing Arts Centre, excavation work by Zauner Construction is nearly complete, with a tower crane soon to be erected.

Advising that he is pleased to see construction underway while much of Australia is affected by the Coronavirus crisis, Goulburn Mayor Bob Kirk stated “Zauner Construction did have some delays during February due to the beautiful rain we received, however they are well into the excavation and sub-structure works, laying the foundations for this brilliant facility."

The Goulburn Heritage Group (GHG) says once the project is complete, the Goulburn Performing Arts Centre, which will seat an audience of 400 people, could become an Australia-wide example of what is possible with historic buildings.

Explaining that the staging of quality arts events will hopefully draw large crowds to the arts centre, GHG spokesman, David Penalver commented "it would be wonderful if Goulburn could demonstrate how proud we are of this city’s history, of its built heritage, of its main commercial city architecture, and of our intellectual arts appreciation and its need for ongoing support.

“An important side issue will be the improvement to main-street activity. With more pedestrian movement comes the need for clear, open spaces; for greenery with attractive seating spaces; and unnecessary vehicles being directed away from the busy commercial centre.

“Another big plus is after-business-hours outdoor activity and growth in inner-city shop-top housing. This project opens up the chance to recreate a lively and prosperous country city for the future. We should all try our best to make this happen.”

The original town hall was designed by acclaimed Goulburn architect Edmund Cooper Manfred. When the building was completed in 1889, with a steep roof comprising Welsh slates, Manfred remarked the materials were more expensive than those usually used in Goulburn.

Funding contributions have come from the NSW Government ($4.5 million) and the Federal Government ($1 million) while the Veolia Mulwaree Trust has pledged $2.5 million as a community partner for the project.

Mayor Kirk added "only $6.3 million in loan funding is being taken out for construction of the Performing Arts Centre by Council."

Images: Concepts for the new Goulburn Performing Arts Centre that will seat an audience of 400 people when complete (top and below) and excavation work underway at the site middle). Courtesy of Goulburn Mulwaree Council.

Related Articles

1st May 2020 - Goulburn Mulwaree Council seeks to advance aquatic centre redevelopment plans

27th May 2019 - Goulburn Mulwaree Council advances plans for performing arts venue

21st November 2018 - A Favourite Goulburn Event returns to Belmore Park

7th November 2018 - Goulburn’s Veolia Arena to host Indoor Hockey State Championships for another three years

19th March 2020 - PAC Australia highlight Coronavirus threat to ongoing viability of performing arts centres

12th March 2020 - Cairns Performing Arts Precinct secures urban design award

19th December 2019 - PAC Australia announces merger of key national performing arts events

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