$200 Million Convention And Exhibition Expansion Boosts Victoria’s Visitor Economy

29 May 2016

Acting Premier James Merlino and Minister for Tourism and Major Events, John Eren today announced the next steps to deliver an expanded Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre.

The project will add nearly 20,000 square meters of flexible, multi-purpose event space, including 9,000 square metres of new exhibition halls, and additional meeting and banquet rooms. It will be fully connected and integrated with the existing Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre.

Once completed, the additional space is anticipated to generate an additional 74,000 international visitors annually, who spend an average $693 each day while in Melbourne, resulting in an annual $167 million boost to our economy.

The Andrews Labor Government has just completed successful negotiations with Plenary Group which will see this project become a reality.

The construction of the expanded facility and hotel and car park will create an additional 700 jobs. Once construction is complete, the expanded precinct will add over 800 ongoing jobs to the economy.

The 2015-16 Victorian Budget provided $205 million for the expansion of MCEC, which will build on the existing success of the Centre, and help cater to the growing demand for exhibitions linked to conferences.

This project is part of a South Wharf development that will connect visitors and local traders with a new 341-room hotel and multi-deck car parking facilities. Leading infrastructure business, Plenary Group and its partners in the precinct are investing more approximately $150-175 million in this development.

Public realm improvements include a new 24 hour access pedestrian link across the site, enhancements to bicycle paths in the area and a glass enclosed sky bridge linking the car park with the South Wharf DFO.

To ensure Victoria has the biggest and best events the Victorian Budget 2016/2017 provided an additional $9 million for the Business Events Fund, which will help the state attract more visitors and investment from around the world.

Quotes attributable to Acting Premier James Merlino

“Victoria is the national leader when it comes to major business events, this expansion will help keep our hotels full, our restaurants and bars buzzing and our economy strong.”

“This investment will create jobs and ensure we stay number one.”

Quotes attributable to Minister for Tourism and Major Events John Eren

“Business events provide the greatest return of all tourism sectors – delegates routinely spend up to six times as much as holiday makers.”

“This new boost will help our state bid for more events, which will see more people visiting, more jobs created as we become an even stronger state.”

Reviewed 19 August 2020

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