With the earthquake strengthening of the Municipal Building complete and other construction work underway, thoughts are now turning to the final fit-out of the facility ahead of its planned opening next year.
Today, Hastings District Council authorised the reallocation of funding to complete the interior fit-out work on the conference and events spaces, the commercial kitchen on the first floor and the new Hastings Information and Ticketing Centre, which is being shifted from its current location on the corner of Russell St and Heretaunga St East.
It also made funding available to finish the upgrade of the streetscape around the building so the whole Heretaunga East 300 block is ready for its reopening by April 30, 2022.
Hastings mayor Sandra Hazlehurst said it had been a long journey to restore the building to its former glory and it was important that when it opened people could make the most of it, right from the start.
“It’s so exciting that our unique, much-loved part of our city’s heritage is about to come to life again, and we can’t wait to open it for the community to enjoy.
“Making this funding available means the Municipal Building and its surrounding amenity, will be completed from day one – ready to host conferences and functions for our community, as well as attract visitors and events from other areas.
“With its hospitality spaces, dynamic laneway connection, and the beautifully restored Shakespeare Room and Assembly Ballroom, this is the last piece of the puzzle for the Toitoi – Hawke’s Bay Arts and Events Centre, making our vision for the most vibrant and significant arts, culture and events facility in New Zealand a reality.”
The funding reallocation for the fit-outs, including a commercial kitchen next to the Assembly Room and a new Hastings Information and Ticketing Centre, as well as street upgrades, has made $2.9m available - $762,000 from existing budgets, and $2.1m from building renewal funding previously set aside for this project.
Group manager corporate Bruce Allan said this investment would enable the building to fully meet the needs of users, and ensure the venue was operated in a way that was both efficient and generated revenue, but was also the most cost-effective for those hiring the spaces.
“We are looking forward to making some exciting announcements in the coming weeks regarding two new hospitality tenancies on the ground floor of the Municipal Building.
“And we are working hard on other potential tenancies, with opportunities to showcase Hawke’s Bay wine and a dealer art gallery two of the options being considered.”
As well as roundabout enhancements, the streetscape upgrades, which are part of Hastings City Centre Revitalisation Plan, will bring this block into line with the Heretaunga St East 200 block, including new and wider paved footpaths, seating, outdoor dining areas, and planter boxes.
22 September 2021
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