The Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre’s (MCEC) $200mi expansion is progressing as scheduled and is due for completion in mid-2018.
Adding nearly 20,000sqm of flexible, multi-purpose event space including new exhibition halls and additional meeting and banquet rooms, the new space will be fully connected and integrated with the existing MCEC, increasing the venue’s total size to over 70,000sqm – the largest convention and exhibition space in Australia.
A multi-purpose area with a retractable 1,000 seat theatre and additional adaptable meeting rooms are two of many flexible features throughout the new building that will allow the space to adapt to the needs of customers.
MCEC chief executive, Peter King said the expansion was critical to ensuring the venue can continue to accommodate the growing global demand for multi-purpose meetings and event spaces. He said: “Our new event space has been architecturally designed to suit the needs of our customers, to make sure our facilities meet their needs, rather than adapting their event to suit our space.
“Within our new building, event organisers can stage an exhibition, which can then transform into a plenary session and then convert into a gala dinner space for the same event. It truly is a dynamic and unique space and our customers are already telling us that this will be a game-changer in the industry.” “To date, we have secured or are in the process of contracting over $15m of revenue in the new space, which will be ready to house events from July 2018.
A defining attribute of MCEC is the diversity of events that are conducted at the venue every day, which attract over two million visitors each year. Once completed, the extra space at MCEC is anticipated to generate an additional 74,000 international visitors annually, who spend on average $693 each day while in Melbourne, resulting in an annual $167m boost to the Victorian economy.
Victorian minister for tourism and major events, Hon. John Eren MP said that Victoria continues to be the national leader when it comes to major business events.
“The expansion of MCEC will help us bid for more events, and attract even more visitors to our state,” Eren said. “This investment will create jobs and ensure we stay number one,” he added.
Other key features of MCEC’s expansion include:
- Banquet room to accommodate up to 450 guests
- 9,000 square metres of pillar-less exhibition space
- Informal networking spaces
- Outdoor event courtyard
- Balcony area to host 150 guests for cocktail functions
- New multi-level car park
- New 331 room hotel.