Melbourne Park Western Precinct, Margaret Court Arena Building, Architect, Sports Project Design

Melbourne Park Western Precinct : Margaret Court Arena

Tennis Venue in Victoria design by NH Architecture / Populous, Australia

7 Mar 2014

Melbourne Park Redevelopment

Location: Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

Procurement begins for second stage of Melbourne Park redevelopment

• Work to begin on the $338m second stage of the Melbourne Park redevelopment
• Expressions of Interest called to design the new Administration and Media building
• Victorian Coalition Government building for Victoria’s future

March 2014 – Procurement has begun for the $338 million second stage of the Melbourne Park redevelopment project, Minister for Major Projects David Hodgett announced today.

Photo of Melbourne city centre:
Melbourne Buildings
photograph : John Gollings

Mr Hodgett said the Victorian Coalition Government was calling for Expressions of Interest (EOI) to design a new Administration and Media building for the sporting precinct.

“As the headquarters of Tennis Australia and the Melbourne and Olympic Parks Trust, the Administration building will be the nerve centre of this busy precinct,” Mr Hodgett said.

“The building will also provide a home for the Australian Open’s media centre hosting hundreds of international journalists in Melbourne for the Grand Slam event.

“Situated between the current function centre and the Jolimont rail yards, the Administration building offers an exciting opportunity to create a new northern face for Melbourne Park that will be seen by tens of thousands of rail commuters every day.

Melbourne Park Western Precinct:
Melbourne Park
photograph : John Gollings

“The building will have a nominal gross floor area of 8,700 metres squared and will be functionally and structurally linked to a new Function Centre, to be delivered in future stages. This project includes the base building and fit-out design, as well as some elements of major precinct infrastructure.

“I am really looking forward to seeing how architects take up this opportunity to contribute to one of the finest sports and entertainment precincts in the world.”

Mr Hodgett was joined by Minister for Sport and Recreation Hugh Delahunty who said the second stage will ensure Melbourne Park stays a world-class venue to stage a range of events.

“The Coalition Government is about to complete Stage 1, including the roof over Margaret Court Arena, and has recently announced the $338 million Stage 2 redevelopment of Melbourne Park,” Mr Delahunty said.

“This investment is part of the Coalition Government’s effort to build a better Victoria and maintain Melbourne’s competitive edge on the world stage.

“Melbourne Park is one of the busiest and highest grossing sports and entertainment precincts of its kind in the world with more than 2.1 million patrons attending 200 events annually and delivering more than
$420 million in economic benefits to the state.”

Mr Delahunty said that as well as refurbishments to Rod Laver Arena and a new Administration and Media building, Stage 2 would also deliver a footbridge over Batman Avenue.

Construction on Stage 2 is expected to begin after the 2015 Australian Open.

The Administration and Media Building open design EOI is available at

9 Nov 2012

Melbourne Park Olympic Rings

Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

1956 Olympic Rings restored and installed at Melbourne Park

Friday 9 November 2012 – Melbourne Park’s unique sporting heritage has been celebrated with two sets of Olympic Rings from the 1956 Melbourne Games installed on the Edwin Flack footbridge overnight, Minister for Major Projects Denis Napthine said today.

“These rings have a long history with Melbourne Park. One set was hung on the Olympic Park grandstand while the other was used on the grandstand for the Olympic velodrome on the site now occupied by AAMI Park,” Dr Napthine said.

Melbourne Park Western Precinct
image from Victoria Government

“It is great to see them returned to their home and publicly displayed less than a hundred metres from their original positions.

“The Olympic Rings are a fantastic reminder of the precinct’s rich sporting heritage and I’m very glad we are able to include them as part of the new Edwin Flack footbridge.

“Named after Australia’s first Olympic champion, Edwin Flack, the footbridge is another link to the past and a reminder of our nation’s sporting history,” Dr Napthine said.

“The bridge is a part of the $366 million first stage of the Melbourne Park redevelopment that is transforming Melbourne’s sporting and entertainment precinct.

“The new bridge will make it easier for everyone to get around the sports precinct and to travel between Melbourne Park, the MCG and AAMI Park. We expect it to open to the public in December this year in time for the Boxing Day tests and the Australian Open in January,” Dr Napthine said.

Minister for Sport Hugh Delahunty said work on the first stage of the Melbourne Park redevelopment was progressing well with elements such as the footbridge and Eastern Plaza opening to the public before the end of the year.

“Work on the National Tennis Centre training facility, offering 21 new indoor and outdoor courts, is ahead of schedule. New entrances have been created for Hisense Arena and over at Margaret Court Arena preparations are being made to transform the building site back into a tennis arena for the 2013 Australian Open,” Mr Delahunty said.

“Melbourne Park is already the envy of all other Grand Slams and this redevelopment will make the precinct even better.

“In addition, this year’s State Budget has also provided $5.5 million to plan for Stage Two of the project ensuring Melbourne Park sets the standard for Grand Slam venues for decades to come.

“The Victorian Coalition Government’s support for the Melbourne Park redevelopment demonstrates our strong commitment to tennis and the continuing improvement of our world class sports and entertainment facilities. It all adds up to a very exciting summer of tennis coming up in Melbourne,” Mr Delahunty said.

Victorian Olympic Council (VOC) President Nick Green OAM said the VOC was delighted with the installation.

“It is wonderful that in the year following our centenary celebrations, the Olympic Rings have been reinstated in the precinct,” Mr Green said

“It is fitting that they hang above Olympic Boulevard on Edwin Flack Bridge which connects this new sporting precinct to the home of the 1956 Olympic Games. We are thrilled that the Olympic heritage will be preserved for generations to come.”

3 Oct 2012

Melbourne Park Development

Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

Melbourne Park redevelopment boosts Australian Open

The 2013 Australian Open promises to be an extra special event with sections of the Victorian Coalition Government’s $366 million redevelopment of Melbourne Park to be open for the first time, Minister for Major Projects Denis Napthine announced today.

Speaking at the launch of the 2013 Australian Open, Dr Napthine said the Open was an important event for Victoria.

Melbourne Park’s Western Precinct design
picture from Victoria Government

“The 2012 Australian Open had a record attendance of 686,000 people and attracted more than 135 million television viewers around the world,” Dr Napthine said. “The Australian Open makes a vital contribution to Victoria, generating around 1,000 full time equivalent jobs and $164 million annually into the state’s economy.

Beyond all this, it is a brilliant sporting spectacle and one of the great traditions of January in Melbourne. “But as any tennis champion knows, you cannot rest on your laurels and that’s why the Coalition Government is continuing its work to transform the Melbourne Park precinct.

“Work on the Eastern Plaza and National Tennis Centre is well ahead of schedule with some elements likely to be finished before Christmas – a year earlier than expected.

“New entrances have been created for Hisense Arena and later tonight the final span of the new Edwin Flack footbridge will be lifted into place over Olympic Boulevard.

“The Edwin Flack Bridge will join with the newly constructed Eastern Plaza to create an unbroken pedestrian link running from the MCG, through Melbourne Park and finishing at AAMI Park. This fantastic new public space will be open later this year,” Dr Napthine said.

Dr Napthine said 1,500 extra seats and a new operable roof were also being installed at Margaret Court, making Melbourne the only Grand Slam to offer three operable roof stadiums.

“What is amazing about this part of the project is that in December this year the builders will pack up, and Margaret Court Arena will undergo a transformation from a building site to a tennis arena for the duration of the Open. Then afterwards, the builders will move back in and work will continue,” Dr Napthine said.

“The same thing will happen again in 2014, by which time we will have the steel roof frame in place and new seating plats installed. This will be a unique experience for everyone – there are not many building sites that host an international sporting event each year.

“The Melbourne Park Facilities are already the envy of other Grand Slams and when Stage One is complete in late 2014 they will be even better. “The 2012/13 State Budget has also provided $5 million to plan Stage Two of the project, ensuring Melbourne Park sets the standard for Grand Slam venues for decades to come.

“Another major new initiative, announced last month by the Premier Ted Baillieu during the Coalition Government’s Super Trade Mission to China, is the introduction of the Australian Open Asia Pacific Wildcard Play-off, to be held in Nanjing later this month. Both the men’s and women’s competition winners will be awarded main draw wildcards into the Australian Open in 2013.

“This initiative and our support for the Melbourne Park redevelopment shows the Victorian Coalition’s strong commitment to tennis and the continuing improvement of our world class sports and entertainment facilities,” Dr Napthine said.

18 Jan 2012

Melbourne Park Western Precinct

Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

Design: NH Architecture with Populous

New design for Melbourne Park’s Western Precinct

Melbourne will be the world’s first Grand Slam tennis venue to have three feature courts with operable roofs.

Melbourne Park’s Western Precinct Building
picture from Victoria Government

Minister for Major Projects Denis Napthine and Minister for Sport Hugh Delahunty today unveiled the new design for Melbourne Park’s Western Precinct, which includes a redeveloped Margaret Court Arena with an operable roof and increased capacity by 1,500 to 7,500.

It will also include the addition of a new indoor concourse area with improved patron facilities.

“This fantastic new design is focused on people and creating an active and welcoming space. The roof will provide greater shade and rain protection for the public, while the new foyer spaces are light, airy and inviting,” Dr Napthine said.

“New entry ways, amenities and internal connections shared with Rod Laver Arena will also make it easier for people to get around, especially during major events such as the Australian Open.

“Nearly the whole perimeter of the arena is glassed in with spectacular views of the city skyline. Inside the foyer, a timber feature wall has shapes cut out of it to mimic the trajectory of a bouncing ball.

“The ‘pleated’ roof design complements the adjacent Rod Laver Arena while giving the new Margaret Court Arena a stand-alone identity. I commend the architects NH Architecture and Populous for their clever work in taking an existing open air arena and creating a totally new facility.

“The Australian Open makes a vital contribution to Victoria, generating around 1,000 full time equivalent jobs and $164 million annually into the State’s economy. That is why the Victorian Coalition Government is making such a substantial investment of $363 million in Melbourne Park’s redevelopment.

“Providing a third operable-roof arena, expected to be completed in 2015, is the last element of this development which also includes the new Eastern Plaza and tennis training facility, a new events area on Batman Avenue, landscaping on the Oval and a water recycling system,” Dr Napthine said.

Minister for Sport and Recreation Hugh Delahunty said the new Margaret Court Arena will further enhance Melbourne’s renowned suite of sporting facilities. “One of the reasons Melbourne is the sporting capital is our range of quality venues,” Mr Delahunty said.

“The upgraded Margaret Court Arena will provide a versatile mid-range venue for tennis, netball and basketball, between the 3,500-seat State Netball and Hockey Centre and the 11,000-seat Hisense Arena. It can also be configured for concerts, further improving one of the busiest entertainment precincts in the world.

“The whole Melbourne Park redevelopment is about boosting Melbourne’s capacity for sporting and entertainment events, which will help secure major events such as the Australian Open for many years to come.

“Patrons coming to the Open this year will already feel the benefits of the redevelopment. The new western concourse events area is in use, the Oval has some fantastic landscaping, and there is a vastly improved connection to the rest of the action via a permanent stairway down from Rod Laver Arena.

“With up to 700,000 people expected at the Open this year and numbers forecast to increase in future, the Victorian Government is working to make sure patrons and players enjoy the very best facilities,” Mr Delahunty said.

Margaret Court Arena Melbourne images / information from Victoria Government

Margaret Court Arena Address
Melbourne and Olympic Parks Trust
Batman Ave
Melbourne VIC 3000

NHArchitecture / Populous

Location: Batman Avenue, Melbourne, VIC 3000, Australia

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