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Key details

Location 
Olympic Boulevard, Melbourne 

Policy objective 
Economic growth

Client 
Sport and Recreation Victoria

Project partners 
Melbourne and Olympic Parks
Tennis Australia

Overview

Melbourne Park is one of the premier sports venues in Melbourne. Since 1988, Melbourne Park has been home of the Australian Open, played each year in January.

Thanks to the $972 million Melbourne Park Redevelopment funded by the Victorian Government, Melbourne Park will remain the home of the Australian Open until 2036, providing the best facilities and amenities for players and fans alike, including three operable roof and air-conditioned arenas effectively weatherproofing the tournament.

The redevelopment of Melbourne Park aims to cater for the growing popularity of the Australian Open, and to establish Melbourne and Olympic Parks as an unbeatable sports and events precinct.

The project includes a strong emphasis on the comfort of patrons with more open space and shade, increased seating capacity, better connections to public transport and the city, and easier movement into and within the precinct.

The redevelopment is being delivered in three stages - Stages 1 and 2 of the redevelopment are now complete. Stage 3 works began in April 2019 and are well underway.

1

Key projects

As part of the Melbourne Park Redevelopment, the southern section of the Tubular Footbridge linking the MCG with Melbourne Park has been removed earlier this year to allow construction works to get underway on Stage 3 of the project.

The bridge configuration was changed in early 2019.

The northern section of the MCG footbridge will remain open and continue to provide a pedestrian connection between the MCG and the Rod Laver Arena/Melbourne Park tram stop and Melbourne Park northern entrance.

The bridge is located between Rod Laver Arena and Melbourne Arena, connecting Melbourne Park to the southern end of the MCG concourse.

Alternative pathways for pedestrians and cyclists have been developed by Development Victoria and Melbourne and Olympic Parks, including the use of William Barak Bridge and Edwin Flack Bridge for pedestrians and low mobility patrons.

Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) is the most widely used green building rating in the world.

The National Tennis Centre, Margaret Court Arena,Rod Laver Arena and Tennis HQ have achieved LEED Gold certification. Centrepiece, the new function and media centre, is also expected to achieve LEED Gold certification.

Key initiatives implemented across the precinct include rainwater capture, recycling measures, energy efficiency, on site production, use of selected sustainable materials, waste reduction and public and alternative modes of transport.

Read more about our sustainability initiatives.

Location

Melbourne Park is located on the northern bank of the Yarra River in the Melbourne Sports and Entertainment Precinct.

Building Tanderrum Bridge

Tanderrum Bridge is the centrepiece of the $338 million Stage 2 upgrade of Melbourne Park.

'Tanderrum' is a welcoming ceremony by the people of the Kulin nations, featuring song, dance and cultural exchange, and providing safe passage for visitors on country. The name was chosen following a public naming competition.

Tanderrum Bridge will welcome hundreds of thousands of fans annually to the Australian Open - one of the world’s great sporting events - along with many other sport and entertainment productions throughout the year. 

The $363 million Stage 1 of the Melbourne Park Redevelopment commenced in 2010 and was completed in time for the 2015 Australian Open.

Early works involved a rain water harvesting tank, extension of the western plaza and Rod Laver Arena concourse, and landscaping works.

The eastern plaza works included:
  • A new National Tennis Centre
  • A public plaza and multi-level carpark
  • New entries to Melbourne Arena
  • A new pedestrian bridge connecting the MCG to AAMI Park

 

As part of stage one, Margaret Court Arena had a major overhaul and now includes:

  • An operable roof
  • 1,500 additional seats
  • A fully enclosed concourse with new retail and food and beverage outlets

Eastern Plaza & National Tennis Centre - January 2013

The $338.15 million Stage 2 of the Melbourne Park Redevelopment began in 2014 and was completed in September 2019, ahead of time and on budget.

  • Tennis HQ, the home of Tennis Australia, was completed in October 2016
  • Tanderrum Bridge opened for Australian Open 2017 to provide a new primary entrance to Melbourne Park and a direct pedestrian link from Flinders Street Station


Rod Laver Arena


The Rod Laver Arena refurbishment included:
  • A new eastern-facing multi-storey main entrance
  • Expanded public concourse space
  • Retractable and cushioned seating
  • Roof modernisation allowing the roof to open approximately six times faster
  • Accessibility improvements following universal design principles such as, a new Changing Places toilet, ramp access to the seating bowl, a new DDA compliant lift, and handrails on all stairs within the seating bowl
  • Significant back-of-house improvements to ensure that Rod Laver Arena continues to host the best events in Australia
  • An expanded loading dock and increased rigging capacity to over 100 tonnes – to attract bigger and better shows to Melbourne
  • Enhanced food and beverage offerings and amenities to improve patron comfort

Building Tanderrum Bridge

Tanderrum Bridge provides a new primary entrance to Melbourne Park, and offers direct pedestrian access from Flinders Street Station. Works were completed in 2016, and the bridge was available for the 2017 Australian Open.

The bridge provides a safe route for fans to enter and exit Melbourne Park, ensuring they don’t have to cross Batman Avenue at ground level. It also reduces pedestrian travel time between Flinders Street Station and Birrarung Marr to under 10 minutes.

Tanderrum Bridge is a world-class addition to Melbourne Park, and was awarded the 2017 Melbourne Prize at the Australian Institute of Architects Victorian Awards event. Tanderrum Bridge also won the 2017 Premier’s Design Award for Architectural Design.

Watch the video documenting the construction of Tanderrum Bridge. 

In April 2017, the Minister for Sport announced $271.55 million funding for Stage 3 of the redevelopment works.

The central precinct is the main element of Stage 3 and includes:
  • A new 5,000 seat multi-purpose Show Court Arena
  • Centrepiece, a new 1,000 seat function and media centre, including: function rooms, pre-event spaces, interview rooms, a 200-seat auditorium, and broadcast studios
  • A central logistics hub including a kitchen and loading dock
  • Completion of the front-of-house public spaces and back-of-house functions separation
  • One new northern match court and one new eastern match court

The old function and media centre was demolished in early 2019. Major construction is well underway and all works are due for completion in time for the Australian Open 2022.

Stage 3 Digital Fly-through February 2020

Stage 3 Timeline

Melbourne Park’s central precinct is the main focus of the Victorian Government’s $271.55 million investment in Stage 3.
  • Old Function Centre demolished
  • Work on Centrepiece at Melbourne Park commences 
Work on a new 5,000 seat multi-purpose Show Court Arena commences
Centrepiece at Melbourne Park complete and available
Centrepiece at Melbourne Park and Show Court Arena available for Australian Open 2022
Stage 3 completion

Sustainability at Melbourne Park


Since the Melbourne Park Redevelopment began in 2010, the project has had a focus on sustainability. The design places a strong emphasis on the comfort of patrons and users and uses clever initiatives to reduce its environmental impact. 

Read more about our sustainability initiatives below.  

Sustainability Initiatives

Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) is the most used green building rating in the world. The National Tennis Centre, Margaret Court Arena, Tennis HQ and Rod Laver Arena have achieved LEED Gold ®certification.

Centrepiece at Melbourne Park is also expected to achieve LEED Gold ®certification.

A water harvesting system was installed in the first stage of the Melbourne Park Redevelopment. This includes an underground 4.5 mega litre storm-water retention tank.The system collects water from across the whole precinct. The system recycles the water for toilet flushing and irrigating the precinct’s green space areas.

Melbourne Park’s sophisticated irrigation system actively monitors evaporation. The system triggers irrigation in zoned areas where it is needed, saving unnecessary or over-irrigation.

The installation of the water harvesting system paired with energy-efficient design helped the National Tennis Centre to achieve LEED Gold® certification in 2013.

The National Tennis Centre has CO2 monitors in the carpark and uses enhanced natural ventilation.

Rod Laver Arena has been extensively refurbished with a focus on sustainability and patron comfort. An upgraded air conditioning system zones and adjusts the air temperature depending on the number of people in the venue. This improves patron comfort and reduces the electricity needed for running fans and cooling equipment.

Rod Laver Arena amenities have been upgraded to use recycled water for toilet flushing. CO2 monitors in the car park trigger the car park ventilation so it only runs when it is needed.

Tennis HQ is a long, narrow building designed so that it allows natural daylight to reach almost 100 per cent of the floor space. Giant eaves on each level reduce glare for the workers inside. The windows are double glazed.

The use of sustainable materials improves air quality in the building. Efficient mechanical and electrical systems are used with LED lighting and motion sensors to save energy. Lights turn off automatically if no one is using a zone. As in the other new buildings in the precinct, low-flow water taps and shower heads reduce the water usage in the building.

Photovoltaic (solar) cells are installed on the roof. They have been installed across the precinct where fixed roofing is available.

Margaret Court Arena reused an existing structure and upgraded it using sustainably sourced timber and energy efficient lighting and air conditioning systems. When the weather is fine, the operable roof can open and reduce the amount of air conditioning and lighting needed.

The roof is also designed to reflect the sun’s heat. Shading canopies block summer sun but allow winter sun through.The arena has efficient water fittings and the toilets are connected to Melbourne Park’s water harvesting system.

Centrepiece at Melbourne Park (Centrepiece) will also be using energy efficient lighting, electrical and mechanical systems and double glazing. The new function and media centre will be connected to the water harvesting system and use efficient water fittings. Photovoltaic (solar) cells will be installed on the roof to drive sustainable energy production. Centrepiece has created space for bike-parking facilities.

The redevelopment has focused on making more green space and shade in the precinct. New trees, garden beds and lawn areas make maximum use of the open space. Consideration of the comfort of pedestrians and event patrons has led the greening of outdoor spaces. While the number and size of the venues at Melbourne Park have increased, no green areas have been reduced.

The concourse design allows for more cyclists and pedestrians to move freely along the thoroughfares. New pedestrian bridges allow for direct pedestrian links to Flinders Street Station, AAMI Park and the MCG. Better connections to the city and public transport reduce the need for traffic coming to and from the precinct.