The end of an era has arrived with deconstruction of the Adelaide Convention Centre Plenary Building well under way to make way for Stage Two of the redevelopment.
Infrastructure Minister Stephen Mullighan said the original Convention Centre Plenary Building was opened in 1987 and was home to the first Convention Centre in Australia.
“In the past two decades the Convention Centre has hosted thousands of events and generated more than $1 billion dollars in direct economic benefit to the State,” Mr Mullighan said.
“The deconstruction also marks the start of Stage Two of the redevelopment which will re- establish Adelaide as one of the premier conference destinations in the world.
“As a result of the project’s unique and highly technical design and the challenge of construction on a complex site, including building over an operating railway station, the total project budget has been increased from $350.32 million to $396.82 million.”
Redeveloping on a heavily constrained site spanning over an operating railway station and adjacent to sensitive commercial users was always going to be extremely challenging.
The revised program will have a greater capacity to address the project’s complex design and construction activities, and manage potential site (latent) conditions.
The additional $46.5 million of expenditure, an increase of 13 per cent, will be funded through the Adelaide Convention Centre’s Future Asset Replacement Account ($14.5 million) and a loan through the South Australian Finance Authority ($32 million).
As a result, the only budget impact will be the interest payments of the South Australian Finance Authority loan which is detailed in the Mid-Year Budget Review.
Mr Mullighan said conventions worth more than $210 million are already booked and the redevelopment is expected to generate an estimated $4.3 billion in tourism and related economic activity during the next two decades.
“Already, more than 600 conferences, seminars and events have been booked for the redeveloped Convention Centre, including 30 events that will each bring more than 1,000 delegates to Adelaide,” he said
“Completion of Stage Two, due in the third quarter of 2017, will both increase the Centre’s total capacity and deliver maximum flexibility, realising the most substantial financial and economic benefits of the redevelopment.
“The increased plenary hall capacity going from 2,500 to 3,500 delegates opens us up to bid for more than 500 additional national and international events which have previously been out of our reach.
“We are currently bidding for 16 events of more than 3000 delegates, which would deliver a potential economic impact of $160 million and more than 200,000 bed nights – this would not be possible without the redevelopment.
“We have already secured the 68th International Astronautical Conference for September 2017, which will be largest conference ever held in Adelaide – 3,500 delegates with every inch of the East, West and Central buildings to be used for the conference
“We have also secured the APPEA (Australian Petroleum Production & Exploration Association) Congress for 2018, which will be the largest exhibition held to date with combined exhibition space of over 12,500 square metres.
“Neither of these events would have been possible in Adelaide without the redevelopment. “This redeveloped Adelaide Convention Centre will again position South Australia as a leader in the international convention market by providing one of the largest,
most flexible and up-to- date meeting places in the world, and removing the capacity restraints which have meant we have in recent years lost hosting opportunities interstate and overseas.”
Source: News Release, Minister Stephan Mullighan, 24 December, 2014