Musical company

A new company appointed to lead the next stage of the great Timaru project

It appears the lead architect appointed to oversee the Timaru Royal Theater and Heritage Quarter project has been pushed aside, with the council announcing that another firm will carry out the design and construction plans.

Timaru District Council released a statement on Wednesday saying that Christchurch-based company Southbase had been selected to undertake work on the next stage of the project.

He said Southbase’s work “would involve the creation of detailed design and construction plans based on the preliminary designs, material specification and design of the new stage and dressing rooms added as part of the public consultation. “.

There was no mention of Architectus, the firm with offices in Christchurch and Auckland, which was named lead architect for the $29million project in August 2020.

Council spokesman Stephen Doran said

he could not confirm whether Architectus would be involved in the project in the future.

READ MORE:
* The Council votes against the demolition of the Royal Theater of Timaru
* Architect named for Timaru’s Theater Royal/Heritage precinct
* Timaru’s Theater Royal vying for ready-made fund

When contacted about the council’s announcement, Architectus referred all comments to the council.

When he was named lead architect, Architectus director Carsten Auer said it was a culturally significant project and that the company’s role was to communicate, provide information, to listen and respond to concerns, and ultimately to gain public support and advocacy for the project. .

“It’s the kind of civic project that excites us,” he said at the time.

A conceptual 3D perspective of the Stafford Street elevation for the redeveloped area at Timaru by Architectus.

Provided

A conceptual 3D perspective of the Stafford Street elevation for the redeveloped area at Timaru by Architectus.

Wednesday’s news follows council’s decision to vote on the future of the project in September 2021. At a public meeting of the excluded council, councilors voted against demolishing the entire theater and in favor of the demolition and reconstruction of the rear house. .

The vote came after concerns from stakeholders and community members about whether the initial plans for the theater’s development were fit for purpose.

The interior of the Royal Theatre, Timaru, in March 2017.

JOHN BISSET/Stuff

The interior of the Royal Theatre, Timaru, in March 2017.

In confirming Southbase’s appointment, the board’s head of property services and client representatives, Nicole Timney, said The Herald Timaru it had conducted a request for proposals (RFP) process with non-tariff and tariff attributes linked to the Ministry of Business Innovation and Employment (MBIE) contract and council requirements for the project.

“We first contacted eight local and regional construction companies and received three responses to the RFP – one local, such as in Timaru, and two others, one from Canterbury and one from Otago.

“The overall budget (for the project) remains at $29 million. The cost of Step 1A is $1.1 million, the steps that follow are still not public, so as not to prejudice or disadvantage the board in future negotiations around them.

Southbase’s work will include the creation of detailed design and construction plans based on the preliminary designs, material specification and design of the new stage hall and dressing rooms added as part of the public consultation.

Upon completion of this, the project will then proceed to consent and contract procurement before the construction phase begins, she said.

The Royal Theater of Timaru is a category 2 listed heritage building.

JOHN BISSET/Stuff

The Royal Theater of Timaru is a category 2 listed heritage building.

Timney said this next step is an essential part of the project.

“It’s great to have reached this major project milestone, and the community will see a lot more activity on the site over the next few weeks as Southbase arrives on site.

“This is the part of the project where we take the concepts, preliminary designs and site plans and bring them to life. This is especially important in today’s climate as we need to ensure that the materials we specify are both available on time and affordable.

Christchurch-based Southbase Construction has led a significant number of similar projects, including the Christchurch Bus Exchange, Tūranga (Christchurch City Library) – which Architectus also worked on, the Waitohi Johnsonville Library and a number of schools across the New Zealand.

Southbase managing director Quin Henderson said he was looking forward to working with local suppliers and tradespeople to complete the project.

“Southbase is delighted to partner with Timaru District Council to commence detailed design work for the project,” he said.

“We look forward to working with local industry to provide what will be a fantastic community asset.”

The redevelopment, which is supported by $11.6 million from the government’s Covid-19 Response and Recovery Fund, administered by Kānoa – Regional Economic Development and Investment Unit, is expected to open in late 2023/early 2024.

Chronology:

May 2018 – Timaru District Council (TDC) confirms long-term plan with development of Theater Royal

March 2019 – The Theater Royal and Heritage Hub projects will be combined

November 2019 – Theater Royal closed to prepare for upgrades

August 2020 – TDC appoints Architectus as project manager

May 2021 – Royal Theatre/Museum design plans released

April 2021 – TDC says Theater Royal upgrade should avoid cost overruns

July 2021 – Calls to put the project on hold due to concerns TDC didn’t listen to users

September 2021 – Call to consider all options for $29 million Theater Royal/Heritage project

September 2021 – The Council holds a publicly excluded vote against demolishing the theater and chooses to change the plan and demolish and rebuild the rear of the theater

January 2022 – TDC appoints Southbase. Architectus refers The Timaru Herald to TDC for comment.