The developer planning to build Gungahlin’s first cinema, Krnc Group, has told a meeting of the Gungahlin Community Council that Hoyts is now the preferred operator for the facility, to be built on the corner of Hibberson Street and Hinder Street from early 2017 if a development application in mid-2016 is successful.
Hoyts currently operates the Woden and Belconnen cinemas.
The Gungahlin cinema plan was first announced in 2013, when Andrew Barr said it would have capacity for more than 2,000 patrons, with two cinemas each seating around 500 and the remaining five with approximately 200 seats each. At that time, Greater Union was in discussions with Krnc Group about the site, which was also to include 4,300 square metres for a major retailer, 1450 square metres for other retail businesses, 1500 square metres of commercial space and three residential floors of approximately 86 one and two bedroom apartments.
The plan at that time was also to provide parking for more than 900 cars of which more than 600 spaces were to be be underground.
“I am particularly pleased that the Krnc family have been the successful tenderer in this process as they have a long history of running very successful businesses in Canberra and their willingness to be involved in this major new phase in the development of the Gungahlin town centre clearly demonstrates the confidence they have in our city,” Mr Barr said at the time.
RiotACT contacted Krnc Group just after noon today to find out whether details of the development remained as per the 2013 plan but no one was available to discuss the matter.
Meegan Fitzharris, the only Gungahlin resident currently in the ACT Legislative Assembly, issued a statement this morning in relation to the cinema development, saying the announcement of Hoyts as the preferred tenderer was welcome news for residents eager to see more entertainment options in the town centre.
“I was proud to lead calls for a cinema to be built in Gungahlin in 2012, and to see real progress being made is great news for our community, which is growing fast,” she said.
“The location will be right on the light rail line, offering great access and an opportunity to make Canberra’s northern town centre an even better place to shop and be entertained.”
The Labor MLA said she encouraged anyone interested in the cinema and the future of Gungahlin town centre to look at what was being proposed and have their say during the planning process.
Ms Fitzharris also said there will be a movie marathon held at Gungahlin College from June 17-19, with details of the line-up to be announced in May.
More information about the Gungahlin Movie Marathon is available at www.lda.act.gov.au/gungahlin/movies.
Photos: Design concepts published with the original announcement of the planned cinema in 2013. Note that the development plan may have changed since they were issued.