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Locals recommended for War Memorial Theatre contract


Media Release

Locals recommended for War Memorial Theatre contract

A report will go to Gisborne District Council next week recommending that local company Currie Construction be appointed as the main construction contractor to complete the War Memorial Theatre redevelopment.

Council has followed a robust procurement process, says project manager David Wilson. “It is great to see a local contractor coming in with the lowest and best tender. Currie Construction agreed to all the terms and conditions of the contract. The theatre redevelopment is a large, specialist project. By appointing a local business we will see most of the cost of the redevelopment coming back into the community. Local people will be employed in the construction of the theatre. The fit out of the theatre requires a range of specialist services. In many cases the subcontractors will also be local.”

The War Memorial Theatre requires major upgrading to bring it up to a standard that encourage production companies to bring shows and entertainment to Gisborne. The current size and poor condition of the theatre are limiting the performances Gisborne gets the opportunity to enjoy. The building is suffering badly from rundown backstage facilities, a leaking roof, inadequate seating and toilets and a lack of disabled access. It does not meet the new earthquake code for public buildings. The theatre has reached the point where it needs to be replaced so that the city has a first class facility for the future.

Resource consent and building consent have been granted for the redevelopment. The theatre was officially closed with a blessing on 17 June. If Council agrees to award the contract construction can begin in September.

The report also recommends that Council increases its contribution to the theatre project from $2.1m to $4.25m. “The realistic costs of construction were revealed while analysing the tenders. A thorough review of the budgets and final project costs has identified that the total cost to deliver the War Memorial Theatre redevelopment, as it is currently specified, is $9.6m,” Mr Wilson confirmed.

“The key variance is in the main construction works. Initial estimates of the construction costs in 2011 were not based on detailed costings. The lowest cost to construct the theatre based on actual tenders is $6.6m, which is an increase of $1.25m from the estimate. This price reflects the increase in the costs of construction materials since estimates were provided. It is important to note that this price is a significantly more accurate cost to complete the theatre. Given the level of detail now available we are confident that the project can be delivered within the budget now specified.

“The War Memorial Theatre Fundraising Trust has done an exceptional job raising $5.1m of their $5.3m target. The ability of the trust to raise this amount of money in less than 12 months demonstrates a high level of community support for the project”.

ENDS


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