The Arts Center Melbourne is a performing arts center in the Melbourne Arts Precinct that welcomes more than 3 million visitors a year. Each year, the arts center stages more than 4,000 performances and public events.
Snøhetta and NH Architects will help fulfill Arts Centre Melbourne’s vision for the future of the theatre building and will provide critical infrastructure upgrades within the theatre building. The work will be executed as part of the $208 million first stage of the transformation of Melbourne’s Arts Precinct which is supported by the Victorian Government.
“We’re extremely proud and deeply honored to be designated as the winners of this highly prestigious project alongside our good friends at NH Architecture. Cultural projects have been at the core of Snøhetta’s practice since our foundation and we’re thrilled to embark on yet another big cultural project in Australia”, says Founding Partner of Snøhetta, Kjetil Trædal Thorsen.
“For decades, The Arts Center Melbourne has been a cultural beacon of the vibrant and cosmopolitan city of Melbourne. It’s with great respect for the past and high ambitions for the future that we’re taking on the task of reimagining this culturally significant landmark. One of our strongest architectural ambitions is to physically open the building up. By doing so we can create a more democratic building, a building which is more welcoming and publicly accessible”, he adds.
Following the logic of several other Snøhetta projects, such as the Norwegian National Opera and Ballet or even the Times Square renewal in New York, the architectural team plans on creating a design that is more open to the public and encourages public engagement. The design team will also explore opportunities to introduce and showcase bespoke and locally crafted art and furniture – a nod both to the original designer’s vision, but also to Snøhetta’s transdisciplinary approach to architecture and design.
Arts Center Melbourne was originally designed by architect Sir Roy Grounds, and construction began in 1973. Due to a forced redesign of the building in the late 70’s, theatre designer John Truscott redesigned the interiors of the complex Concert Hall and Theatre Building before the latter opened in 1984.
An important part of the project is to reimagine the building while also safeguarding and respecting the existing qualities of the theatre building as they were imagined by Roy Grounds and later John Truscott. The building will be a tribute to the past and the future of Melbourne and will ensure Arts Center Melbourne remains a landmark of the Melbourne Arts Precinct and the Australian cultural scene”
News via Snøhetta