Cairns Regional Council

08/18/2017 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 08/18/2017 00:11

Munro Martin Parklands delivers on vision

One year since its opening Munro Martin Parklands has become a much-loved addition to the city, delivering on the promise of providing a unique botanic experience and outdoor performance space.

On the eve of the parkland's first year anniversary, Mayor Bob Manning said: 'Munro Martin Parklands has been transformed from an unloved, under-used, eye sore to a venue that the people of Cairns can be proud of.

'It's extremely satisfying to see that our vision of a vibrant, tropical parklands with a high-calibre performance space has come to fruition. To have the likes of the Royal Ballet choosing to perform in Cairns is a testament to the quality of the venue.

'We've not only been able to present amazing touring productions that may otherwise not have come to the city, but just as importantly MMP has been a platform for our own home-grown talent.'

Cr Manning praised the work of landscape architect Andrew Prowse who was instrumental in the evolution of the parklands project, taking it from the initial idea of a small recreational park to what is now a stunning entry statement to the city.

Designed to display tropical vines that are just too big for a traditional botanic gardens, the 72 arbours are now awash with tropical foliage creating a shady network of paths for residents and visitors to enjoy.

Mr Prowse said he was surprised at the rapid growth of the vines.

'With the enormous Flame of the Forest and Jade vines flowering, now is the perfect time to explore the parklands,' Cr Manning said.

Munro Martin Parklands was officially opened on 19 August 2016 by Cr Manning and His Excellency, the Honourable Paul De Jersey, Governor of Queensland, with a sell-out performance of Queensland Opera's The Marriage of Figaro.

One component of The Precinct, the parklands will complement the Cairns Performing Arts Centre (CPAC), currently under construction across Florence Street. With seating for a combined 1,300 people in the main auditorium and black-box theatre and the ability to close Florence Street for larger festivals, The Precinct will play a pivotal role in showcasing Cairns as the Arts and Cultural Capital of the North.

CAPTION: Jade vine in flower

Fast facts:

  • The project cost $12million and took 12 months to complete
  • 13 performances have been held attracting an audience of almost 40,000 people
  • The Royal Ballet performance was the only time the company has performed in a regional Australian city; the 3000-strong audience was the largest single audience of the tour
  • 395 vines are presented on 72 arbours, there are 63 trees and 7,000 smaller plants
  • 255m3 of hand selected basalt stones have been used in the stage wall and wings
  • The 13m high green proscenium is the only one of its kind in Australia

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