Ipswich Outlook


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Ipswich is centrally located in booming south east Queensland, with the state’s capital Brisbane to the east, and numerous rural and agricultural hubs to the west. The city is ideally positioned on the national road network, 40 minutes drive from Brisbane and an hour’s drive from the Gold Coast.

Ipswich is Queensland’s oldest provincial city and has a rich history, renowned for its architectural, natural and cultural heritage. It offers all the modern facilities and attractions of a progressive city, and is an exciting place to live, work, invest and visit.

The city has one of the fastest growing populations in Australia, with a youthful demographic and affordable housing, Ipswich plays a key role in the State Government’s strategy to direct population growth away from the coast - making it the ideal place to invest.

LOCATION: Ideally positioned on the national road network with Brisbane to the east, the Gold Coast to the South, and the agricultural hubs of Lockyer and Fassifern Valleys to the west.

RAPID DEVELOPMENT: Major features in the area include a new hospital, new railway line, expansion of the University of Southern Queensland, Amberley RAAF base expansion and extensive road infrastructure projects.

ECONOMIC OUTLOOK

SPRINGFIELD

Ipswich produces a Gross Regional Product (GRP) of $7.95 billion, 2.7% of the state’s Gross State Product (Economy.ID 2016).

The city’s key industries include manufacturing, health care and social assistance, retail trade, public administration and safety, construction and education training. In 2014/15 Ipswich contributed 6% of Queensland’s employment and 5.5% of its value add (Economy.ID 2016).

The award-winning Springfield master planned community has been developed over the last decade as a satellite city.

Already with a new hospital, business park and railway line, Springfield currently has several other projects in the pipeline including a $50 million expansion of the University of Southern Queensland, $70 million headquarters for GE, $80 million Mater Hospital, $100m Brookwater Resort and plans to further extend the Orion shopping centre (Pressley 2016).

In 2013, the development of a $1.2 billion rail line connected Springfield to Brisbane CBD and beyond (Tempo Living 2016).

Avevo has recently announced Springfield as the location for their new $1 billion retirement village, bringing with it 5,400 jobs over the next 20 years of construction and a further 580 permanent jobs once the development is complete (Howarth 2016).

RAPID DEVELOPMENT

Beside the flurry of development at Springfield, many areas of Ipswich have major development projects and infrastructure upgrades planned and underway.

The hotly anticipated $200 million upgrade to the Ipswich Motorway will greatly reduce congestion and improve the road’s flood immunity (Jacques 2016). The motorway caters to more than 85,000 motorists, including 12,000 trucks daily.

The RAAF Amberley base, the largest operational base in the country, is a large employer in the Ipswich area and an anchor tenant for a potential aeronautical precinct. The $1 billion base expansion will provide increased air power capability and generate 3,500 civilian jobs (Gould 2016).

By the end of 2016, a workforce of 1,500 contractor staff will be working on infrastructure projects at the air base (Lifestyle 2016). The ten projects will be delivered over the next four years.

The local railway industry has been revived by Canadian multinational Bombardier, which was awarded the State Government tender to build a $190 million railway maintenance centre at Wulkuraka.

Information technology is a key focus for Ipswich with council dubbing Accenture to progress the city’s “Smart City” Transformation Strategy and Implementation Plan.

The plan seeks to deliver an innovative blueprint to optimise the city operations, enhance community engagement, cultivate digital technology capabilities and lead economic innovation (LeMay 2016).

The new $220 million Polaris Data Centre at Springfield is a hi-tech, bulletproof fortress safeguards the State Government IT assets.

Last year, the $550 million Dusit Thani Brookwater Golf & Spa Resort launched, which has been one of the largest foreign investment developments in Australian history (Pierce 2015).

It is the biggest large-scale tourism project ever built in the region, bringing international visitors to the city.

Current statistics predict that by 2026, the Ipswich economy will be $12.7 billion, a growth of 159.2% since 2008 (Tempo Living 2016).

INFRASTRUCTURE AND DEVELOPMENT AT A GLANCE

  • $200 million upgrade to the Ipswich Motorway
  • $1 billion expansion to the RAAF base at Amberley
  • $190 million railway maintenance centre
  • $220 million Polaris Data Centre
  • $550 million Dusit Thani Brookwater Golf & Spa Resort
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