With its steel roof in place and the concrete being poured for the floor, the Plaza building is fast taking shape ahead of opening early next year.
The Plaza rebuild is taking place alongside the Hawke’s Bay Opera House Theatre and Municipal Building earthquake strengthening programme that started in 2016.
Work to reconstruct the Plaza site began with its new foundations being laid in December last year, and since then progress has been steady.
With the steel roof now 95 per cent in place, it’s full steam ahead to pour the concrete floor, which will be followed by the installation of the double-glazed glass etched panels that make up the exterior wall on Hastings Street.
The final stage will be to install the decorative, acoustic ceiling – the icing on the cake of the transformation of this space into an inspiring gathering place for locals and visitors alike.
Meanwhile, work on the Hawke’s Bay Opera House itself is also well advanced with much of the structural work complete and the big job of cleaning and painting the interior and all of its decorative features underway.
Group manager community facilities and programmes Alison Banks said it was exciting to see the overall project coming to life, aided recently by a $4.75m funding boost from the Lottery Grants Board.
This comprised $4m from the Significant Project Fund allocated to the Municipal Building redevelopment, and $750,000 from the Environment Heritage Fund to go towards the cost of earthquake strengthening the Municipal Building.
“This external funding support is invaluable for us to help realise the vision for this precinct that as an events and cultural centre will offer a unique visitor experience and act as a hub for the community to enjoy.”
Hastings mayor Sandra Hazlehurst says both the Opera House and Plaza are set to reopen by February next year, which along with the Municipal Building, will form a world class arts, conferencing, events and entertainment venue that meets the needs, goals and aspirations of future generations.
Earthquake strengthening work is underway on the Municipal Building, with this facility projected to reopen in 2021.
“Later this year, we will talk to the community about the great opportunities that the Muni will offer,” Mrs Hazlehurst says.
26 July 2019
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