The Nambour Civic Centre at C-Square in Currie St will be transformed into a multi-screen cinema complex, eventually offering more than 200 screenings each week.
At yesterday’s Ordinary Meeting (September 17), Sunshine Coast Council relinquished its lease at C-Square so the proposal by the complex owners could proceed.
C-Square’s owners Centenary Square Pty Ltd will partner with Majestic Cinemas, an independent and experienced regional cinema operator which operates a number of complexes in similar regional areas.
From November, Majestic Cinemas will operate a two-screen cinema to offer greater selection, and more movie sessions, seven days a week at C-Square.
The owners will undertake a multi-million dollar internal refurbishment over the next 12-18 months to establish five cinemas. The current theatre will be modified to operate as both a cinema and performance space.
Divisional councillor Greg Rogerson said council was committed to revitalising Nambour so the area became a thriving place to live, work and play.
“This refurbishment ticks all the boxes to achieve that and grow the local economy,” Cr Rogerson said.
“The draft Nambour Activation Plan has also been recently adopted by council and this proposal complements our long-term plans for the town.
“There is already a rising confidence in the town’s future due in part to an increasing population, a younger demographic moving in and a new vibe around town.
“The cinema complex will bring more people to Nambour, provide a greater sense of community, and provide more activities for young people and families, particularly during Christmas and holiday periods.
“About 20 people will be employed and there’ll be the indirect employment growth for other businesses in Nambour.”
Centenary Square Director John Sorrentino said Majestic Cinemas had expertise in cinema operations and access to the latest movies as well as art house and independent releases through their established relationships with distribution companies.
“The company has a track record of success in revitalising existing facilities by providing a great product which is welcomed by local residents,” Mr Sorrentino said.
“Flow-on benefits to the town will start quickly with an immediate increase in the movie offering to locals as soon as Majestic take up residence.
“Once the development is completed in late 2016, this will increase to around 200 sessions per week.
“It is our aim to transform C-Square into a lively, vibrant and thriving hub, combining a commercial and busy retail centre by day and an exciting entertainment precinct by night.
“Welcoming Majestic Cinemas to the heart of Nambour will be a big step forward towards this goal.
“We’ve already received a positive response from local businesses who understand this multi-screen cinema complex will activate the town centre.”
Majestic Cinemas CEO Kieren Dell said residents would not have to travel as far to see a great choice of movies from latest release blockbusters to special interest and arthouse films.
“There will be something for everyone at affordable prices,” Mr Dell said.
“We also expect complementary businesses such as cafes and restaurants will follow the cinema with more people coming into the town centre on weekends, in the evenings and during school holidays.”
Nambour Alliance chairman Tony Vella welcomed the announcement and said the introduction of cinemas that could screen block-busters and new releases in Nambour would benefit the greater Sunshine Coast economically and socially, providing diversity and choice.
“As the Nambour Town Vision of 2011 identified with the existing Arthouse Cinema, this refurbishment will enhance the town’s vitality and vibrancy,” Mr Vella said.
“The convenience of being geographically central to all the Sunshine Coast has to offer should mean real increase in visitor spends, with a positive knock-on effect for our traders as well as new business confidence for our social and economic catchment.
“It will be a major social benefit to people of all ages and encourage an evening economy.
“We are delighted. Well done to Centenary Square and all who have worked together to make this happen.”
Cr Rogerson said the private sector had demonstrated its capacity to activate C-Square and the multi screen-cinema would take that a step further.
“Nambour Civic Centre has numerous dark nights every week and that’s a waste of such a valuable resource,” Cr Rogerson said.
“C-Square and the Centre need an anchor tenant and Majestic Cinemas can deliver on that.
“One of the attractions for council is Majestic Cinemas’ proposal to include community activities.
“The Civic Centre’s capacity for community meetings, concerts and theatre will be retained outside peak periods and the possibilities will grow as a range of auditorium sizes will be available once the redevelopment is complete.
“The cinemas can continue to be hired by community groups as they are today and Majestic Cinemas will promote this use for various events including community fundraisers during non-peak periods.
“There will also be savings to ratepayers in the form of no operating costs and council won’t have to undertake future facility upgrades.
“Surrendering the lease and having the private sector enter this space will save ratepayers about $700,000 per annum.
“Some performances will need to be relocated to other council venues and we are working closely with promoters during this process. However all civic centre bookings up to February 2016 will be honoured.”
Majestic Cinemas will take over the Nambour Civic Centre management in November and offer seven-days-a-week service.