12 July 2016
Melbourne's Southbank is set to become one of the world's best training grounds for the arts, with the construction of a new Melbourne Conservatorium of Music .
Acting Premier James Merlino today announced the project, a partnership between the Victorian Government and the University of Melbourne, which will expand and relocate the University's elite music education and research facility from Parkville to Southbank. The new building will open to students in 2019.
Home to the Victorian College of the Arts (VCA), the VCA Secondary School and The Australian Ballet School, Southbank is already a magnet for the best and brightest young talent. The new Melbourne Conservatorium of Music will bring thousands of new local and international students to the area.
The Conservatorium, to be built on 33 Sturt Street next to the Melbourne Recital Centre and the Southbank Campus of the VCA and MCM, will be the best in Australia, offering most comprehensive range of music courses.
The State Government is contributing the land under a long-term lease arrangement as well as $3 million.
The $105.5 million development is expected to generate $350 million for the state and create more than 2,000 jobs during construction. The project is supported by major philanthropic partners.
Bringing together the VCA and MCM, the project will create a vibrant hub for students in the heart of Melbourne's Arts Precinct. It will open up a new outdoor public space linking Dodds and Sturt Streets and include a 400-seat auditorium that will be available for use by arts organisations.
The new Conservatorium building expands the University's growing presence in Southbank, including the development of a new visual arts wing in the former Police Stables and a new public art gallery – Buxton Contemporary – due to open in late 2017.