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Keys to Wellington’s convention centre, Tākina, handed over to City Council

A major milestone in the lead up to opening of Tākina was celebrated this week with Wellington City Council receiving the keys to its new convention centre. The venue will officially open end of May, with the test events taking place earlier in May.

Taranaki Whānui representatives, as mana whenua, attended the ceremony to officially bless the building prior to occupation.

Tākina, meaning ‘to invoke or encounter’, was gifted by Taranaki Whānui to reflect the building as a place people come together to connect and collaborate in the capital.

Wellington City Council’s focus is now on the internal technical fit-out to prepare the venue for its first conference and exhibition.

This week’s activities also opened the door for Tākina Events, the operator of the venue, to move in to start a rigorous schedule of testing and training ahead of a very busy few months ahead.

“With more than 100 events on the calendar for the first year, the majority of which are multi-day conferences between 300 and 1,000 delegates, our team is excited to be on site to get to know every square centimetre, bit of equipment and technology,” says Jake Downing, Te Papa’s Director of Commercial Services.

The ground-floor public Exhibition Gallery will open on Saturday 3 June with the internationally acclaimed LEGO® interactive exhibition, Jurassic World by Brickman® on display.

The show is set to be the first of many touring exhibitions to take place in the centre and is the biggest ever put on by Ryan “The Brickman” McNaught, with more than six million LEGO® bricks, including 2.5m for visitors to show off their skills with.

Almost 500,000 people are expected to visit Tākina in its first year based on the line-up of conferences and events already in place.