Napthine trumps Labor with $35 million for GPAC

FUNDING: A concept image of a redeveloped GPAC.

THE COALITION has trumped Labor with a $35 million promise toward redevelopment of Geelong Performing Arts Centre (GPAC).
The Napthine Government’s commitment is $5 million higher than last month’s Labor promise to help fund the $140 million project.
Premier Denis Napthine announced today the funding would help give GPAC a new Ryrie St façade, a 150-seat cabaret and music space, more dance studios and improved disabled access.
“This $35 million GPAC project will not only create jobs and stimulate economic development for the region but will also ensure the facility continues to attract leading performers and artists,” Dr Napthine said.
“The Coalition Government has previously demonstrated its commitment to Geelong’s cultural precinct by providing $15 million towards the new $45 million Geelong Library and Heritage Centre. In addition, $2 million was provided for critical renewal works at GPAC.
“This new investment of $35 million in GPAC will be a further major social and economic boost to the Geelong region, including up to 150 construction jobs and 120 ongoing jobs.”
State Arts Minister Heidi Victoria said the additional funding would enhance GPAC’s standing as one of the state’s premier regional arts venues.
“GPAC has an important role in providing cultural opportunities to the people of Geelong and the greater Geelong region and $35 million investment by a re-elected Napthine Government will support GPAC’s ability to continue to deliver vibrant arts programming,” Ms Victoria said.
More than 230,000 patrons attended performances at a GPAC in the past financial year.
The Independent revealed in August that the facility had become “unsafe” with concrete cancer and was unable to meet demand from the region’s growing population.

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