Major Wins for Townsville North Queensland

21st June 2024

Townsville Enterprise CEO Claudia Brumme-Smith said

“It has been an outstanding week for North Queensland, having secured $35 million for remediation works on the North Rail Yards, $2 million for the Townsville Eastern Access Rail Corridor and approval from the Federal Government for the Gawara Baya Wind Farm. I am buoyed with optimism, and proud to see our advocacy efforts take shape in real terms – securing the future of Townsville North Queensland for generations to come.

The world’s attention is turning to the North, and I truly believe Townsville North Queensland can deliver on it’s potential as Australia’s most liveable green manufacturing city. Congratulations to the projects below bolstering our construction pipeline in the next 10 years.”

$35 Million committed to Townsville’s North Rail Yards

Yesterday, Premier Steven Miles committed $35 million to kickstart the development of Townsville's North Rail Yards. This investment will go towards remediation works and stabilisation of heritage infrastructure to ensure the North Rail Yards are shovel ready. 

The North Rail Yards project will be the first build-to-rent development in regional Australia. This high-density living provides an opportunity to attract highly skilled workers to the region, offering a variety of amenity and lifestyle benefits. 

With a vacancy rate below 1% and an estimated 20,000 ongoing and construction jobs by 2029, North Queensland's housing stock is under significant pressure. Our advocacy of this project and securing the investment needed will ensure Townsville North Queensland can attract the workforce needed for major projects like CopperString, hospital upgrades, advanced manufacturing and aviation.  

$2 million committed to Townsville Eastern Access Rail Corridor

Townsville Enterprise also had the pleasure of attending a roundtable forum hosted by The Honourable Bart Mellish MP, Minister for Transport and Main Roads and Minister for Digital Services and the Honourable Scott Stewart, Minister for Resources and Critical Minerals to discuss the issues and challenges of the Mount Isa rail line. 

During the forum Minister Bart Mellish announced $2 million has been allocated to the Townsville Eastern Access Rail Corridor (TEARC) to revisit the business case.

TEARC will not only support the growth of industries like mining but will also strengthen the region's economic resilience by streamlining logistics and ensuring competitive access to global markets. 

TEARC will connect the North Coast rail line directly into the Port of Townsville through the Townsville State Development Area, parallel to the Port Access Road, creating capacity for the growing tonnage demand on the Mount Isa rail system and improve traffic flow, amenity and safety by reducing the number of freight trains travelling through Townsville's city centre.

Gawara Baya Wind Farm receives approval from Federal Government

Gawara Baya is a renewable energy project located on an active cattle property within Gugu Badhun Country about 70km inland from Ingham in North Queensland, in close proximity to the existing electricity transmission network.

With the capacity to provide clean power to up to 240,000 Australian homes, the project will eliminate 1.2 million tonnes of carbon dioxide from Australia’s energy market every year.

Gawara Baya is a key project driving progress against time-critical decarbonisation, as well as supporting the solution for the critical shortage of renewable energy supply expected by 2025.

Read more

Windlab, CEO, John Martin said: 

“Windlab welcomes the Federal Government's approval decision for Gawara Baya, which will create up to 300 new jobs and inject more than $200 million into North Queensland's economy."

“Achieving the approval milestone allows us to progress financial close, which will unlock major regional employment, supply and contracting opportunities and our 35-year, $200,000 annual Community Benefit Fund before the end of 2024." 

Our advocacy is securing the future of Townsville North Queensland

A key role of Townsville Enterprise is to influence all levels of Government as a respected, non-partisan advocate for Townsville North Queensland. We do this through developing policy positions that support growth and development, advocating for what's best for North Queensland and amplifying the voice of our members and partners.

Read our full Unlock the North Budget Submission HERE.

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