George Thompson Building (Building 55)

RMIT’s future Advanced Manufacturing Precinct

The George Thompson Building

The George Thompson Building will house the Advanced Manufacturing Precinct. The building’s existing facilities will be renovated and will also be extended by an additional level.


58 Cardigan Street, Carlton

Project overview

In response to five years’ worth of industry consultations, RMIT is establishing an Advanced Manufacturing Precinct to deliver practical industry skills training for the design, development, production, marketing and management processes of the advanced manufacturing sectors.

The George Thompson Building will house the Advanced Manufacturing Precinct. The building’s existing facilities will be renovated and will also be extended by an additional level

The Advanced Manufacturing Precinct will:

  • Provide “real-life” industry training in high-level skills and para professional areas identified by the advanced manufacturing industry as skills shortage areas
  • Deliver cross-disciplinary training to meet industry needs in engineering and advanced manufacturing technologies, applied design, development, production, marketing and management.
  • Provide training that will be aligned with design research to be undertaken at the University’s future Design Hub, and mechanical manufacturing and aerospace engineering on the Bundoora campus.
  • Develop opportunities for new and innovative product development in manufacturing through co-location of applied design and advanced manufacturing specialisations
  • Foster co-operation and joint ventures between industry and training providers and make facilities available to other Registered Training Organisations (RTOs)
  • Be a “test bed” for new products and processes.
  • Provide rapid prototyping, manufacturing and computer integrated manufacturing, which includes automation, systems integration, computer numerically controlled manufacturing and testing of products and materials

This project is funded by the Australian Government through the Teaching and Learning Capital Fund (TLCF) for Vocational Education and Training (VET).

Project update



November 2010

Project completion

October 2010

Commissioning of building

September 2010

Installation of energy monitoring equipment

June 2010

Purchase of Green funding equipment

April – November 2010


March 2010

Demolition complete

January 2010

Builder (Probuild Constructions) commence on site

September 2009 – January 2010

The main contractor, Probuild, has been appointed. Construction works commenced on Wednesday, 27 January.

August 2009

The signoff of the Design Development for the Advanced Manufacturing Precinct has been signed off and the main contractor tender documentation is being prepared.

July 2009

RMIT University will receive $8.35 million from the Australian Government’s Training Infrastructure Investment for Tomorrow (TIIFT), which forms part of the Teaching and Learning Capital Fund for Vocational Education and Training.

One million dollars of these funds will be committed to interactive energy performance metering, interpretive screen-based equipment and significant energy and natural resource reduction installations for both training and efficiencies for the Advanced Manufacturing Precinct.

The Advanced Manufacturing Precinct was also officially launched by Victorian Skills and Workforce Participation Minister, Jacinta Allan.

April 2009

The schematic designs for the Advanced Manufacturing Precinct have been presented to the Campus Development Committee (CDC) and have been formally approved. The Design Development phase of the project will follow.

September 2008

Detailed briefing with key stakeholders has taken place and a concept brief for the future Advanced Manufacturing precinct has been completed.

The functional brief will then be developed jointly between the appointed architects and the briefing consultants. A consultant is expected to be appointed in November 2008.

A schematic design report will be completed in early 2009 with design documentation completed in late June 2009.

Project timeline

Work begins

Late 2009

Work ends

November, 2010


RMIT Project Manager

Rocky De Pace and Melissa McGloughlin (Montlaur)

Manager, Client Relations

Julian Holdsworth-Smith



Main Contractor



Melbourne Conference Unit (Melbourne)
Press Conference, Wednesday, 19 November, 10am

Part of a speech given at the premises of Thales, Melbourne World Trade Centre. Premier Brumby discusses his government's statement on industry. He discusses the statement's $27.8 million global action plan to encourage exports by Victorian business. The Premier says that central to the statement's aims is a $50 million two-year transition fund that will assist companies move into more innovative products and services. He also outlines plans for an advanced manufacturing precinct at RMIT. The Premier concludes by commending the work of today's host, the Thales company and its export initiatives in the field of air traffic management.

[Next: Gallery 1: Architect’s digital image]