The new MCEC event space is anticipated to generate an additional 74,000 international visitors annually, bringing an annual $167 million (£93m) boost to the local economy.
The expansion adds 20,000 sqm, increasing MCEC’s total size to 70,000 sqm, mean the venue takes the top spot as Australia’s largest convention and exhibition space.
The building design was a joint venture between architect firms NH Architecture and Woods Bagot.
The expansion includes:
- The Goldfields Theatre - a 9,000sqm multi-purpose event space with a retractable 1,000 seat theatre
- New exhibition halls
- Eureka meeting rooms
- Outdoor terrace area
- Sovereign Room banquet space and Goldfields Café and Bar.
Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Trust Chairman John Brumby said: "A project like this involves a lot of different people and I think the success of this building is testament to the strong engagement among key stakeholders throughout planning and construction."
Acting Premier, James Merlino announced the expansion site as officially open, with the first event in the new space being the Malaria World Congress (1-5th July 2018).
The $205 million (£115m) expansion was funded by the Victorian State after building works began in 2016.
Minister for Tourism and Major Events, The Hon. John Eren MP added: "Not only will this redevelopment boost tourism, it will also create more than 900 new jobs and provide a massive boost to our local economy each year."
The expansion is part of a larger South Wharf expansion project by Plenary Group and its partners that includes a new 347-room Novotel Melbourne South Wharf and a new 1,150-space multi-level car park - all connected and integrated with existing buildings.
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