Upgrades to the Festival Centre

15 March 2015

The Festival Centre will undergo major structural and façade upgrades as part of the transformation of Festival Plaza into a world-class destination at the heart of the Riverbank precinct.

The State Government has committed $90 million to facilitate the upgrades which are the most significant works undertaken at the Festival Centre since it opened in 1973.

Deputy Premier John Rau said the Festival Centre was a key part of the overall Festival Plaza project.

“Upgrades to the Festival Centre will provide patrons with a fully-integrated Riverbank experience in line with the world-class facilities of the new Adelaide Oval and Convention Centre,” he said.

“Importantly, it means the Festival Centre will remain fully accessible during construction works for the new underground car park and redevelopment of Festival Plaza.”

Mr Rau said the extensive redevelopment of the Adelaide Festival Centre will include:

  • Opening the northern side of the centre to provide better linkages with the Riverbank
  • Upgrades to Elder Park Kiosk
  • An interactive children’s play arts playground
  • Renewal of Festival Theatre foyers
  • New entries to Adelaide Festival Theatre and Dunstan Playhouse and exterior upgrades
  • Significant technical and equipment upgrades
  • Increased disability access to all three theatres
  • New entrances and direct access to the upper and lower foyers from the new integrated Plaza and car park, via escalators and additional lifts.

Arts Minister Jack Snelling said the revitalisation will ensure the Adelaide Festival Centre maintains its reputation as one of Australia’s leading cultural centres, now and into the future.

“This redevelopment, along with previously announced funding to repair the Dunstan Playhouse Shell will fix the exterior of the building and resolve all of the long-standing issues with concrete degradation and water infiltration.

“The funding for the technical works also makes a significant start on the redevelopment of the interior of the Centre.

“The technical upgrades will provide enhanced entertainment and theatrical experiences for South Australian audiences and will ensure the Centre continues to attract headline acts to Adelaide into the future.

“The eventual full redevelopment of the interior of the Centre is an ambition the Government supports.

“Works on the northern side of the building and include a series of public walkways, new entrances and grassed areas to provide a transition from Elder Park to the Festival Centre and ensure access during construction of the Plaza and carpark.

“The work will also create a new Children’s interactive arts playground which will provide an added family attraction to the Riverbank Precinct.”

The State Government has committed $180 million to the redevelopment of Festival Plaza under an agreement reached with Walker Corporation.

The redevelopment will provide a sweeping multi-purpose plaza seamlessly linking Elder Park and the Riverbank Footbridge to the Adelaide Railway Station and North Terrace and includes new underground car park, a premium office building along a closed-to-traffic Station Road, a row of cafes, restaurants and retail.

Work on the Festival Centre and Redevelopment of the current Plaza is expected to begin by the end of the year.

Deputy Premier John Rau
Minister for Planning
Minister for Housing and Urban Development

Minister Jack Snelling
Minister for the Arts

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