Friday, 20 February 2015

Margaret Court Arena re-development: Design and Project Management

Last night we had the pleasure of attending a presentation held by The Arc Agency which gave us an insight of how the design and project management process resulted in the newly re-developed architectural icon, Margaret Court Arena.

The key note speakers included Penelope Blunden from Major Projects Victoria followed by Astid Jenkins and Wilko Doehring from NH Architecture who spearheaded this project.

The project from its initial design stages, demolition to fit out and through to handover took about four years to complete, with a few Australian Open tournaments still utilizing the arena. According to the speakers the most crucial part of project management is relationships and collaboration. They couldn't stress enough how vital that was for the successful completion of the project. With the size of this project and the variety of parties and stakeholders involved, it was very important that they were all transparent with one another and that all parties were fully briefed. Penelope referred to this as the 'no surprises' approach.

After the presentation in the Yarra room we were treated to a guided tour of the Arena where they showed us a few of the key spaces and we got to interact with the speakers.

The level of detail and conceptual characteristics of the interiors were quite impeccable. The brief was to integrate a certain level of 'tennisness' (as they referred to it), yet also be accepting and accommodating of other functions such as other sporting events and concerts.

It was a great pleasure meeting some of the key parties involved with the development of this iconic piece of architecture which we will enjoy for many years to come.

With the Architect Wilko Doehring from NH Architecture

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