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REVEALED: Bold $40M plan to transform showgrounds





A BOLD plan three years in the making has been unveiled by the Ipswich Show Society for a $40 million exhibition and flood evacuation centre to be built at the Ipswich Showgrounds.

The proposed facility, integrated with other showground infrastructure, would cater for 4000 people in an emergency situation, seat over 600 people in a main auditorium and be a beacon for expos and home shows.

The plan was unveiled to the QT by Ipswich Show Society vice-president Darren Zanow and Blair MP Shayne Neumann who have highlighted the economic, social and emergency management benefits of the project.

Funding will be sought from federal, state and council coffers with the Ipswich Show Society also making a major contribution.

The project involves transforming the current cattle pavilion into a four-storey exhibition and flood evacuation centre.

The bottom two levels will be for car parking with the exhibition centre’s main hall on the third level. The mezzanine level is set to contain offices and storage.

The Show Society also plans to have an additional two-storey car park within the grounds to cater all-up for 1000 car spaces.

Mr Zanow said the total spend, including upgrades of other showground buildings and facilities, would be around the $58 million mark.

The grandstand complex, the cricket pavilion and the exhibits pavilion are all part of upgrade plans and Mr Zanow said funds would be sought from a variety of sources, with his organisation also contributing.

“Since the 2011 flood we have been looking at providing a better facility to look after the people of Ipswich in times of emergency disaster,” Mr Zanow said.

“We have come up with the concept of an evacuation centre/exhibition centre facility and we’ll integrate that with the existing facilities on the showgrounds and renovate those facilities.

“That will allow us to have home shows, boat shows, expos of all descriptions and bring tourism and business to the region.

“The largest clear span facility in Ipswich now is at the showgrounds and it is not big enough or practical enough to bring the big players in the game.

“We do need an upgrade, and this is all part of a long-term plan to upgrade the facility so that it is to a really high standard.”

The Show Society is nearly at the end of the business plan stage of the project and has come up with detailed designs in league with consultants to make the plan as workable as possible.

“Then we will go into the next stage which will be to get it shovel ready and get the development approval from council…in particular for the underground car park and convention and flood evacuation centre,” Mr Zanow said.

The Show Society will also be seeking funding support for the $500,000 needed to get the project shovel ready.

Mr Zanow said fruitful discussions with Mayor Paul Pisasale and Cr Andrew Antoniolli had been held and both provided letters of support. He said Mr Neumann and both state and federal governments were “on board as well”.

Mr Neumann said a facility much larger than the Ipswich Civic Centre was required for conventions, performances and exhibitions and that the proposed facility at the showgrounds would bring jobs and millions of dollars into Ipswich.

Mr Neumann said there were an urgent need for the facility and that it would bring many benefits.

“Ipswich has had three major floods since 1974 and this will enhance the capacity for flood evacuation and recovery,” he said.

“It will expand the premier showgrounds in our region and this can act as a convention centre for us until we get an Ipswich Performing Arts Centre.

“This will be bigger than the capacity of the civic centre and be able to seat easily 600.

“It is affordable, achievable and will be accessible to the public of Ipswich because it will be in the heart of Ipswich.

“All up it will cost around about $40 million and the show society is going to put money towards it. I will support them in future federal government funding they will seek.

“I would also be looking for Ipswich City Council and the State Government to put money towards it.”

Cr Antoniolli, the divisional councillor, told the QT he was backing the project.

“When we did have the 2011 flood it showed the shortcomings of the showgrounds, although it was the best that we had,” Cr Antoniolli said.

“This project has the benefit of being able to function as an evacuation centre at a high level.

“The Show Society is obviously looking to the future to have an expo space and some of their infrastructure is getting dated.

“It ticks all the boxes from a community perspective.”

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Development Update: $67m Springfield Central Sports Complex



Development Update $67m Springfield Central Sport Complex

A $67 million sporting development in Greater Springfield, an urban growth corridor located south west of Brisbane’s metropolitan area, is on track to open this year.

The developer of Greater Springfield says it is “cementing itself as one of Australia’s super sporting meccas” with its new Springfield Central Sports Complex slated to open to the public mid-year.

The new sporting facility, which neighbours Springfield Central State High School and St Peter’s Lutheran College, also joins the recent announcement of the $70 million Brisbane Lions AFLW stadium announced in January.

Development Update $67m Springfield Central Sport Complex

Springfield’s current population sits around 41,000 with this figure predicted to triple in size by 2030.

Rewind to 1992, when Greater Springfield founder Maha Sinnathamby purchased the 7000-acre parcel of land — today’s Springfield — which no developer wanted to touch.

Development Update $67m Springfield Central Sport Complex

Sinnanthamby says the region has a growing student population.

“There are currently 11,000 students in Greater Springfield, with that number expected to grow by 1200 each year moving forward,” the Springfield Land Corporation chairman said.

The developer says Greater Springfield is Australia’s first masterplanned greenfield city since Canberra, and to date it has seen $15 billion worth of infrastructure invested.

“We have a supersized CBD and an employment target of one job for every three residents,” Sinnathamby said.

The new sporting development will feature four ovals, 16 netball courts, eight fields, eight tennis courts, an athletics track as well as clubhouses and playgrounds.


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City Deal a $58bn ‘Game Changer’ for Southeast Queensland



City Deal a $58bn ‘Game Changer’ for Southeast Queensland

South-east Queensland could be green-lit for the biggest “city deal” in Australia, with a $58 billion proposal to guide its growth, and the prime minister announcing his support for the major plan.

With a focus on supporting diverse sectors within the region including housing and planning, tourism, manufacturing and education, the SEQ City Deal could also pave the way for government-owned land to be opened for development.

Queensland deputy premier Jackie Trad this week released Transforming SEQ, which highlights 35 “opportunities” that could be considered as part of the future City Deal, including six “game changers” for the region.

“Modelling by KPMG has shown a SEQ City Deal could stimulate an increase of up to $58 billion in our economy by improving the productivity and competitiveness of the region,” Trad said.

‘Game Changer’ for Southeast Queensland-min

Prime minister Scott Morrison will be meeting with the SEQ Mayors and Queensland government to discuss the proposal this week.

The City Deal, which involves all three levels of government — council, state and federal — would see government working on priorities to drive the SEQ economy.

Under a City Deal plan, all three levels of government sign an agreement to set the priority infrastructure projects and initiatives.

City Deal a $58bn ‘Game Changer’ for Queensland

Integrated land-use planning approach?

Property Council chief executive Ken Morrison described the announcement as “a game-changer for the region.

“Our growing cities and urban regions are the engine rooms of the Australian economy,” Morrison said.

“The city deal model brings together all levels of government around the same plan to boost productivity and jobs through targeted investment in city-shaping projects and infrastructure.”

Property Council Queensland director Chris Mountford said the council has been collaborating with state government and SEQ councils for nearly six years on the potential for a city deal.

“The State and local governments have also agreed in principle to a more coordinated integrated land-use planning approach,”

“Opening up under-utilised government-owned land for development has also been agreed as a clear opportunity to unlock economic activity, create jobs and build business confidence.”

City Deal a $58bn ‘Game Changer’

Growing population

The region’s current 3.5 million population is forecast to increase to 5.3 million within the next 25 years, ultimately requiring an extra 800,000 homes and additional one million jobs.

Focus has been placed on the recently released people mass movement study which identifies the impact of the expected population growth on the region’s ability to cope with future transport demand.

Minister for Cities Alan Tudge said he, along with the prime minister, will be meeting with the SEQ Mayors to discuss the Deal.

“We need to cater for this rising population and the SEQ City Deal will be a huge step forward,” Tudge said.

South-east Queensland is already home to over two-thirds of the state’s population.

The region is home to nearly one in every seven Australians.

The agreement marks the second city deal for Queensland following the policy being first established in Townsville.

So far, city deals have been developed for Western Sydney, Townsville and Launceston, and a further four more are currently under negotiation in Adelaide, Hobart, Perth and Geelong.



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$63b infrastructure plan to keep SEQ moving till 2041



$63b infrastructure plan to keep SEQ moving till 2041

It’s going to cost $63.7 billion to keep South East Queensland moving over the next two decades, according to a study released today by the region’s mayors.

The population of the region is expected to grow by about 1.8 million people to more than five million people by 2041, putting extraordinary demand on the already strained transport network.

The SEQ People Mass Movement Study lists a total of 47 projects designed to keep city-to-city trips under 45 minutes and urban commutes under 30 minutes, including a faster rail network connecting the Sunshine Coast and Gold Coast via Brisbane and west to Ipswich and Toowoomba.

Brisbane Lord Mayor Graham Quirk said the infrastructure plan, coined the Strategic Transport Road Map, would keep the region “economically productive” while maintaining its liveability.

“Business as normal is not going to work, we need to increase the amount of money that is being spent in South East Queensland,” Cr Quirk said.

He said the plan would require an average expenditure of about $2.7 billion per year until 2041, which he said was “not an unrealistic figure”.

“What we are seeing in Sydney and Melbourne right now is this massive spend on infrastructure. That’s because they allowed it to get too far behind. We cannot do that in South East Queensland.”

He said there had been no shortage of plans for the region’s transport network, but it was time for all levels of government to unite with a shared vision.

Redland City mayor Karen Williams said the plan delivered the projects over a “reasonable amount of time with a reasonable amount of investment”.

“It’s not a matter of ‘can we afford this?’ It’s the fact that we can’t afford not to do it,” Cr Williams said.

Faster Rail is not as fast as high speed rail, which delivers speeds up to 350km/h, but could run at about 160km/h with top speeds of up to 200-250kmh, with limited stops.

It would be connected to the light rail networks on the Gold Coast and Sunshine Coast in order to ease congestion on major arterials.

Other projects include the Brisbane Metro, Cross River Rail and road upgrades, including the Pacific, Sunshine, Centenary, Ipswich and Logan motorways and the Bruce, Warrego and Mt Lindesay highways.

The study also took into account emerging technologies including autonomous vehicles.

It was first proposed in 2016, and began in September 2017, with the aim of bringing together multiple local, state and national transport studies into one cohesive plan.

The South East Queensland region takes in the Brisbane City, Ipswich City, Lockyer Valley Regional, Logan City, Moreton Bay, Redland City, Scenic Rim Regional, Somerset Regional, Sunshine Coast and Toowoomba Regional council areas.


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