Cairns expands on conference sustainability

Extension enables Cairns Convention Centre to host multiple events – eco measures to ease pressure on environment while raising business events profile of north Queensland and Greater Barrier Reef region

THE AU$176 MILLION expansion to Cairns Convention Centre is set to be opened next month with northern Queensland and the Great Barrier Reef regions expected to benefit from premier business events, association conferences and sustainable events.

A view of the convention centre from Wharf Street, Cairns

Details of the expansion were announced at IMEX Frankfurt this week. Among the additions are a rooftop banquet area, three new meeting rooms and an exhibition and plenary lecture space, providing a total of 10,500 square meters of additional floor space to accommodate multiple or larger events.

The expansion also provides the potential for up to 2,500 delegates to attend conferences and exhibitions across the entire venue.

“Coupled with the latest audiovisual technology, the additional space offers conference organisers a wealth of flexibility and industry leading infrastructure for their events,” said Janet Hamilton, general manager at Cairns Convention Centre.

“The new interior features significant new exhibition space, a plenary space capable of hosting 400 people and three new meeting rooms.”

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The new Trinity Level looks over two world heritage sites:  the Wet Tropics Rainforest and the Great Barrier Reef. The Trinity Room, which can be set for gala dinners and large cocktail functions, can accommodate up to 500 people, while the outdoor Trinity Terrace offers panoramic views of the Trinity Inlet.

“With face-to-face events more popular than ever, we have proactively equipped the venue with cutting-edge audiovisual equipment,” Hamilton said. “This technology meets the needs of not just the many live events we host but also their hybrid and digital requirements. This ensures that every delegate, whether here in person or on the other side of the world, has an incredible event experience.”

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The expansion incorporates eco-conscious features such as high-performance glazing on the building, which increases energy efficiency by up to 30 per cent. There are also 1,200 sun blades and biophilic design living greenery over the façade to reduce heat gain from the sun.

Hamilton added that smart-building management systems would monitor and control power usage daily. All lighting is based on high-efficiency LED with automated dimming control and motion sensors.

“We have solar-boosted hot-water generation and energy-efficient fans and equipment. We are installing electric-vehicle charging stations and priority is given to Energy Star ratings when buying new appliances.”

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