Rod Laver Arena plans unveiled

The Victorian Government has released plans for the first major redevelopment of Rod Laver Arena since its opening in 1988.

A new eastern building will serve as the main entry point to the Australian Open-hosting venue.

The Melbourne Park venue’s major refit will include a new loading bay to increase access and allow for bigger shows and concerts to be staged.

New public amenities, including food and beverage outlets and toilets will also be added, along with an eight-storey building to house staff and media.

Tennis Australia’s facilities director Tom Larner said, off the back of the new Margaret Court Arena, both players and spectators at the year’s first grand slam would see the difference.

“The Australian Open has led the way in terms of facilities for players in the 27 years we’ve been at Melbourne Park,” he said.

“We’re five years into 12 years of building works.

“It will ensure that for many, many years to come, the facilities that the Australian Open offers are the best in the world and the players love coming to Melbourne.”

Construction will begin in February 2016, following next year’s grand slam, with Rod Laver Arena to remain open until the completion of works in 2020.

Overall, more than $700 million is being spent on the multi-year redevelopment of the Melbourne Park precinct, which includes a new pedestrian bridge linking Melbourne Park and Birrarung Marr.

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