The finishing touches are being made to Sydney Exhibition Centre @ Glebe Island (SEC@GI), the interim facility which will house the $100 million per annum Sydney exhibition industry for the next three years while the new world-class ICC Exhibition is constructed at Darling Harbour.
The first event, Reed Gift Fairs Sydney February, will open its doors on Saturday February 15 to Wednesday February 19, with 30,000 visitors expected to attend.
Malu Barrios, General Manager of SEC@GI, has been a regular visitor to the site and has watched its transformation into exhibition space of up to 25,000sqm.
“We are all looking forward to hosting the first exhibition in February and our commissioning event, held last Friday, allowed us to trial all our services.
“This was a good opportunity to test the venue operations, transport, logistics and catering ahead of the first major exhibition and we were pleased with the outcomes.
“We asked visitors to rate their experience and, of those surveyed, 83% said it was excellent or good so we were pleased with those results.
“SEC@GI is a unique venue with amazing harbour views and will certainly provide exhibition visitors with a great experience,” Ms Barrios said.
Exhibition & Event Association of Australasia Chief Executive Joyce DiMascio said the completion of the building on-time and ready for the start of the 2014 exhibition season was a big achievement.
“The six-month construction timetable was very tight and we are pleased that Sydney’s biggest trade and consumer shows will have a new home during the rebuilding of facilities at Darling Harbour,” she said.
“We commend the NSW Government and the project team at Infrastructure NSW for working with the industry to ensure the best possible outcome could be achieved.
“The trade and consumer exhibitions that will be held at Sydney Exhibition Centre @ Glebe Island are vital to the economy of Sydney, NSW and Australia and we are pleased that business can still be done at these important events.”
Regular scheduled special event ferries will transport visitors from Darling Harbour Convention Wharf to SEC@GI and buses will also run from Central Station. The new facility also has a taxi rank and limited onsite car parking. Special event transport schedules will be tailored for each show with details available at the event website at the time of ticketing or registration.
Darling Harbour will remain an active and vibrant precinct during the three-year development, with retail, dining and leisure activities and hotel accommodation for visitors to SEC@GI.