Council on track to award Ararat Arts Precinct construction tender

Sam Shalders

Posted Monday 6 March, 09:03am

Tenders for the redevelopment of the Ararat Arts Precinct close this week, with interest from local and national construction firms.

Ararat Rural City Council Mayor Cr Paul Hooper said the tender for construction works closed on Tuesday, March 7, marking an important milestone in the $6.235 million project.

“We’re on track to award the contract this month so that we can begin on site works in April,” he said.

“This is very exciting for us after so many years of careful planning and we’ve been delighted with the level of interest shown from around the country in this project.”

Cr Hooper said compiling the tender documents had been a major task for Council and the appointed Architect, Williams Boag and Associates, with some 200 technical drawings and more than 500 pages of tender specifications making up the list of documentation.

“This is a very important historical site, and there are numerous issues that need to be taken into account to protect the integrity of the Town Hall and other buildings," he said.

“We’ve not seen a redevelopment of this magnitude in Ararat before.”

Build in 1898, the stately Ararat Town Hall – now the Performing Arts Centre – is listed on the Victorian Heritage Register.

Cr Hooper said the project would include refurbishing the existing building, with an extension to create a larger gallery.

Other additions would be a café, green room and new storage areas.

The interior of the Performing Arts Centre itself would also undergo 'a facelift'.

“Outside, the project includes some civil works and landscaping around the building’s exterior, so this very prominent corner site will certainly look very smart when it’s complete,” Cr Hooper said.

The Ararat Arts Precinct redevelopment is jointly funded by Federal, State and Local governments, with a community fundraising effort currently underway.