The Cultural Centre showcases innovative, diverse, distinctive and creative cultural programs for enjoyment by residents of, and visitors to, the Blue Mountains.
Located in the heart of Katoomba the Blue Mountains Cultural Centre encompasses the Blue Mountains City Art Gallery, Katoomba Library and Into the Blue, an interactive exhibition that explores the history and natural landscape of the Blue Mountains. Visitors can also enjoy the viewing platform that takes in stunning panoramic vistas of Katoomba and the Jamison Valley.
The Blue Mountains Cultural Centre is a sister facility to the Blue Mountains Theatre and Community Hub and Braemar Gallery located in Springwood.
A Brief History
In response to longstanding community calls for a regional art gallery, planning for the Blue Mountains Cultural Centre was initiated by Council in June 1998.
The Council pursued an innovative model – a Cultural Centre incorporating a City Art Gallery and Interpretive Centre to reflect the community’s strong attachment to the arts and its identity as a City within a World Heritage National Park environment.
The TAFE East site in the Katoomba CBD was identified as the preferred location for the Cultural Centre. Following further extensive consultations by Council with the Blue Mountains community throughout 1999, the NSW Government agreed to include the Centre as a part of a mixed use development and to contribute funding towards construction.
In 2004 Council agreed to include the development of a new Katoomba Library in the project. Master planning for the site was undertaken and design concepts developed for a building that would include retail and car parking space in addition to a high profile Cultural Centre.
An agreement between the parties (the NSW Government, Council and the Coles group) was signed in December 2005. The initial design concepts were further evolved during 2006. The developed design and costing phase was completed and further funding commitments were achieved in 2007. The project also received support from the Australian Government through the Better Regions and Green Precincts Fund programs. After more than a decade of planning, The Blue Mountains Cultural Centre opened in November 2012.
The project, on the former TAFE site in Katoomba, is a collaborative enterprise between the Council, the New South Wales Government and the Coles Group, with funding support from the Federal Government.
The Project Architects are Hassell Pty Ltd in Joint Venture with Scott Carver Pty Ltd