In a move that foreshadows the multi-million dollar redevelopment of The Perth Mint’s retail and exhibition facilities, Gold Corporation – the Mint’s operator – has appointed Acumen Design as exhibition design consultants.
One of Perth’s leading tourism attractions and winner of 11 Tourism Awards since 2000, the 109-year old Perth Mint opened its doors to the public in 1992, and since then it has welcomed in excess of 1 million visitors.
Chief Executive Officer Ed Harbuz said that the time to update visitor facilities was well overdue.
"The Perth Mint is an exciting experience for many visitors to the capital of Western Australia. However, the retail and exhibitions areas have changed little since the early 1990s and a radical overhaul is required to ensure it meets modern expectations of interactivity, entertainment and education, while paying heed to the Mint’s heritage significance."
The Corporation called for tenders from exhibition design consultants Australia-wide, inviting them to submit creative proposals in response to the brief – "to make The Perth Mint a world-class tourism attraction and a must-do for all visitors to Perth, as well as local residents."
Acumen Design is at the forefront of interpretive design in Australia, creating experiences that take visitors on a journey of discovery and wonder. Notable projects undertaken by Acumen include the Flagstaff Hill Maritime Museum and Night Experience, the Waltzing Matilda Centre, The Australian Stockmen’s Hall of Fame, The Koorie Heritage Centre, The Jewish Museum of Australia, The National Capital Centre, the ANZ Banking Museum and exhibits at The National Museum of Australia.
Acumen Design Director Tim Hooper said,
"The Perth Mint is a wonderful historical building and one of the world’s great working mints. This is a golden opportunity to develop breakthrough interpretive experiences and design features that will really make locals and visitors to Perth sit up and take notice."
The Perth Mint redevelopment project, which is currently considering a variety of concepts, is projected to be delivered in phases between 2009 and 2011, and will be entirely self-funded.
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About the Perth Mint
The Perth Mint, wholly-owned by the State Government of Western Australia, is the official issuer of the Australian Federal Government’s Gold and Silver Bullion Coin Program. The Mint opened in 1899 in response to the discovery of rich gold deposits in Coolgardie and Kalgoorlie. It was Australia’s third branch of Britain’s Royal Mint – the others being the Sydney Mint and the Melbourne Mint (both closed).
The Perth Mint remained under Britain’s jurisdiction until 1 July 1970, when ownership transferred to the State Government of Western Australia.
In 2003, The Perth Mint officially opened an 8,400 square metre state-of-the-art manufacturing facility next door to its original limestone building. Dominating the Mint’s heritage precinct, these two important buildings are powerful symbols of more than 100 years of minting excellence in Western Australia.