The $397 million redevelopment of Australia’s first convention centre has been completed a month out from a major international conference.
The centrepiece of the Adelaide Convention Centre revamp is a state-of-the-art 3000sq m Plenary Hall. With a 3500-seat capacity, the hall can be divided into more than 15 configurations to accommodate a wide range of conferences, exhibitions, banquets and other events.
The facility in the centre’s East Building features the world’s largest rotating seating platforms, which can be rotated 180 degrees within minutes.
It also features tiered hinged seating stored in the roof, which can be lowered to convert the room into a theatre-style auditorium, along with operable walls, which can be used to subdivide the space or retracted to open up the Plenary to full capacity.
The building in the South Australian capital became Australia’s first convention centre when it opened in 1987 and has helped Adelaide to become a conference city.
The first major event to be held in the new East Building will be the 68th International Astronautical Congress in September, expected to attract more than 3500 delegates including tech billionaire Elon Musk. It will be the largest event of its kind ever held in Adelaide.
Adelaide Convention Centre Chief Executive Alec Gilbert said the building’s new features made it one of the most flexible convention centres in the world.
“The opening of the East Building today doesn’t simply mark the completion of the expansion of the Convention Centre, it marks the start of a new era for our world-class, state-of-the-art facility”, he said.
South Australian Premier Jay Weatherill said the project, along with other investments in the area such as the Adelaide Oval redevelopment, Festival Plaza upgrade and Adelaide BioMed City, had turned the Riverbank precinct into a world class destination.
“This expansion and redevelopment of the Convention Centre establishes another premium Riverbank venue for events and conferences, and also provides yet another reason for people to come and visit our great state”. he said.
The East Building replaces the original Plenary Building and follows the completion of the West Building in July 2015.
Together, the East, Central and West Buildings deliver 20,000sq m of multi-purpose event space, offering sweeping views of the Riverbank precinct.