Melbourne Convention Centre Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
Completed on time and on budget, the facility is regarded as the greenest Convention Centre in the world and is recognised as an architectural triumph for Melbourne. In 2010 the Centre was awarded the esteemed Victorian Architecture Medal at the Victorian Architecture Awards and soon after, won the Public Architecture Award at the Australian National Architecture Awards.
Created to increase Melbourne's business tourism market, the facility has stimulated the urban renewal of this previously rundown precinct attracting over $1 billion of investment in a five star hotel and a mixed use development of some 100,000m2 which includes retail, office, residential and food and beverage along Melbourne's Yarra River.
The centrepiece of the Melbourne Convention Centre is a 5,500 seat plenary hall which is able to separate into three smaller functional plenary halls of 1,500, 1,500 and 2,500. The project celebrates the plenary hall as a building within a building, virtually wrapped by 8,800m2 of public foyer and event space and supported by 7,300m2 of banquet and meeting rooms.
Such a functional outcome was only made possible by undertaking the additional cost of excavating a basement to house backstage operations. This allowed direct vehicle access to the stage, and so, released expanses of uninterrupted public realm at ground level for visitors and the local community.