Consultants have started their work on Tamworth’s proposed performing arts centre – and they are the “Holy Trinity” of the industry, according to entertainment venues manager Peter Ross.
Mr Ross said the three key consultants – who will deliver a vision for the form, function and financials of the centre – were, “in my opinion, the best in the country”.
The architectural, technical and arts management consultants have been in the city talking to interest groups such as the dramatic and musical societies, and Tamworth Regional Arts and Cultural Advisory Committee.
Mr Ross said it was hoped they would deliver a report in February or March, “but it’s not something we want to rush: we want to make sure we get this right”.
“They have a long history of developing new theatres for local government and in similar regional and capital areas, so I think we’re in good hands,” he said.
Mr Ross said the idea for the centre would be conceptualised and costed, then it was up to the community and the council on whether to commit to it.
“The next step will be to see if it’s something we want to move ahead with.”
A council spokesperson said $200,000 had been budgeted for the overall feasibility work.
The consultants are Williams Ross Architects, theatre consultant Craig Gamble of Setting Line, and arts management consultant Rob Gebert.
“[They] will provide their concepts to Tamworth Regional Council for review, where council will determine whether or not the concept and costing of the proposed plans are achievable for the region,” they said.
“Once council believe the concepts are achievable, the documents will go out on public exhibition and to community consultation before further commitment to the project is made.
“Council will then also seek state and federal funding.”
All about soul
“Place-making is the art and science of planning and making authentic, vibrant and resilient public spaces that are valued by their communities, but also admired by visitors,” he said.
“It’s about contributing to our community’s soul.”