SoundWeb for Federation Square

The long-awaited Federation Square, the new centre of cultural activity in Melbourne, is now officially open.

Photo caption: BMW Edge auditorium. The cinema’s audio is run by a Soundweb 9088. (Photo by Ian McKenzie)

Winning the tender to provide an audio infrastructure for the complex, contractors Rutledge Engineering selected BSS Soundweb as their DSP networking devices for several of the project areas.

Rutledge senior project manager, Matt Edgcumbe, says Soundweb was preferred because of the ease with which it connects remote locations together.

A multimedia fibre and CAT6 backbone provides the connectivity for a 9088iiMM & two 9088iiLL devices. The sound systems in the Plaza, and architecturally-challenging BMW Edge auditorium, are fed with audio from the scheduled multimedia system, which is then mixed with the local PA desk. 

Because the mixing desks are temporarily set up for events, the Soundweb also provides the ability for the client to connect several microphones to use the system in an ‘automated’ mode when no operator is present. This is particularly useful for lunchtime events in the {laza.

Photo caption: ACMI Cinema 1. The audio in Cinemas 1 and 2 is run by multiple Soundweb 9088’s. (Pic: Trevor Mein © 2002)

Also within the Federation Square complex, Rutledge Engineering installed a further three 9088iiLL Soundwebs in the ACMI multiplex cinema to matrix and EQ the many audio formats to the JBL conventional and ‘large format’ surround systems. To ensure certification of the two cinemas the Soundweb was tested and passed for THX specifications.

All BSS processing equipment was supplied by Jands, BSS Audio’s exclusive Australian distributors.

The development of Federation Square essentially began in the mid 1990s as part of the Jolimont Rail Yard rationalisation project that reduced the railway lines running parallel to the Yarra River from a total of 53 lines to 12.

This ultimately led to the decision by the Victoria State Government and Melbourne City Council to initiate Federation Square, which was to become a new centre of cultural activity for Melbourne — a large, open public civic destination.

Facilities include piazzas, galleries, cafés, ACMI multiplex, as well as glass ‘wintergarden’ atrium (complete with rainforest and desert greenhouses), a free-standing restaurant and free-standing viewing tower.

Federation Square Management, with the architects (Lab + Bates Smart), project managers (Clifton Coney Stevens) and managing contractors (Multiplex), completed the project in the face of a variety of challenges, enabling the development to be officially opened by the Premier of Victoria, the Hon. Steve Bracks MP.

Skip to toolbar