#The HOTA Project
The say home is where the heart is… we say home is where the art is.
The HOTA precinct is the centrepiece of the Gold Coast Cultural Precinct masterplan. The Masterplan lays out the City’s vision for a central cultural precinct for the city’s thriving cultural and artistic activity and is the blueprint which guides the evolution of the precinct over the next 10 to 15 years as the city’s artistic and cultural needs grow.
From its beginnings, the 17-hectare HOTA site at Evandale has been a place of almost constant development and evolution.
Early historical records demonstrate a thriving Indigenous community in the area and in 1860s the land was used to farm cotton and then sugar cane, later supporting dairy and other agricultural uses.
The City purchased the land in the 1960s and Gold Coast Civic Centre was opened with great fanfare in 1976 with its distinctive three-story glass beehive design, designed by local architect Alan Griffith.
The Keith Hunt Community Entertainment and Arts Centre was officially opened in December 1986 and was owned and managed by the Gold Coast City Council. It was then renamed as the Gold Coast Arts Centre.
In 1993, the Gold Coast City Council formed the Gold Coast Arts Centre Proprietary Company Limited as a separate legal entity. The purpose of this was to diversify funding income, deepen community engagement and increase marketplace flexibility. The Gold Coast City Council is the sole shareholder in the company and continues to provide the majority of funding.
In 1996, an Arts Café was added to the building, and in 2004 an extension was built, comprising a new cinema, two function rooms and an administration area.
In 2009 a City led Cultural-Civic Precinct Taskforce to develop a masterplan to explore Evandale’s future potential. And in March 2010, the Gold Coast Arts Centre was renamed, rebranded, refurbished and relaunched as The Arts Centre Gold Coast, as part of an ongoing change of strategic direction.
In 2013 the City held an International design competition for the design of the new cultural precinct at Evandale. Out of more than 75 entries ARM Architecture and TOPOTEK 1 were chosen with their design informing thewhich presented a vision of a central cultural precinct for the city’s thriving cultural and artistic activity.
Stage 1, the HOTA Outdoor Stage, was completed in November 2017. It’s a versatile double-sided venue: a black-box theatre with a riverside entrance and a back wall that folds away completely, opening the box out onto an amphitheatre with seating and lawn space for 5,000 people.
The second completed stage is the 130-metre green bridge (which is blue), designed and delivered by ARM, Archipelago and CUSP. It’s for pedestrians and bikes and spans the Gold Coast’s Nerang River, connecting HOTA to Surfers Paradise via Chevron Island.
On May 8, 2021, we officially threw open the doors to the HOTA Gallery, as well as The Exhibitionist Bar on the Gallery Rooftop, Palette Restaurant, and a new HOTA Shop.
Designed by international architects ARM, HOTA Gallery spans six levels, with over 2000m2 of AAA rated, international standard exhibition space which includes:
‣ The Main Exhibition Gallery – a 1000m2 space, designed specifically for touring exhibitions of an international size and scale. It will be a column free space with soaring six-metre high ceilings.
‣ A dedicated Children’s Gallery.
‣ 900m2 of exhibition space for the City collection and temporary exhibitions.
‣ Nearly 1000m2 of collection storage, work-space and crate storage area.
Construction timeline – September 2018 to end 2020
First month of Gallery on sale – 10 April 2021
Official opening – 8 May 2021
The HOTA Project continues to be guided by the masterplan - with future stages still under consideration.