Port of Townsville is kicking off its Harbour City Project with the development of a key parcel of riverfront land as a centre of excellence for marine science and research.
The Port is seeking Expressions of Interest (EOI) from developers to undertake the redevelopment of the Flinders St site under a long-term lease arrangement.
The site is located between Reef HQ and the Museum of Tropical Queensland, and it currently houses Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority offices.
Its redevelopment is being touted as a catalyst project within the Port’s Harbour City precinct, which aims to revitalise 10ha of prime waterfront land located along both sides of Ross Creek.
Townsville Mayor Jenny Hill said the development would help revitalise that part of the city and spur further developments in the Waterfront Priority Development Area.
“This precinct has represented a strong connection between the people of Townsville and both the Great Barrier Reef and our regional history through Reef HQ and the Museum of tropical Queensland,” Mayor Hill said.
“Redeveloping this site will revitalise that area of the city and provide a new community precinct with improved public access and renewed retail and tourism offerings.”
The site is expected to incorporate commercial, retail, tourism and education facilities. The redevelopment will integrate with the Reef HQ Aquarium and Museum of Tropical Queensland, with headquarter office accommodation for GBRMPA and other organisations, showcase facilities for James Cook University, Australian Institute of Marine Science and other leading and emerging marine research, training and education industries.
The waterfront will be activated through retail and tourism facilities, public walkways and open spaces that encourage public access and linkages.
Port of Townsville is attracting a record number of containerised cargo movements, boosting the North Queensland economy.
More than 65,000 container movements have been recorded so far this financial year, already up several thousand on the 2014/2015 Port of Townsville record of 62,512 containers.
An estimated 80,000 containers are expected to be imported and exported by 30 June 2018, an increase of about 60 per cent on the previous financial year.
There is the potential to top the 2014/15 record by about 20,000 boxes. "NSS is the incumbent service provider for the major container shipping lines calling the Port of Townsville and through our investment in our people and equipment we are able to provide an efficient and cost effective service which has been pivotal in developing this trade through the region," NSS general manager David King said.
Transport Minister Mark Bailey said the region had weathered difficult times and was starting to see signs of a recovery.
“We are fortunate to have four shipping lines servicing the Port of Townsville in the container trade including ANL, Swire Shipping, Mariana Express Lines. This means more services, better frequency and more competition on freight pricing for regional businesses,” he said.
New Century Resources has successfully completed a share placement to raise about $40 million towards the restart of operations at the Century zinc mine in the lower Gulf.
The company says its offer was significantly oversubscribed, with strong support from major institutional investors.
“This successful placement puts New Century in a very strong financial position and allows us to progress the restart and ramp-up of the Century Zinc Mine and deliver on our strategy to become a globally significant zinc producer in 2018,” managing director Patrick Walta said.
The company says it is on track to begin producing in the third quarter of this year, at an initial processing capacity of 8Mtpa.
A restart feasibility study into the planned tailings reprocessing placed the initial start-up cost at $62.5 million.
Once in production, the company plans to invest a further $63 million over a 15-month period to ramp up to 15Mtpa.
The company is undertaking an expansion prefeasibility study, looking at the potential to mine other mineral resources on the lease in addition to the tailings reprocessing activities.
CPB Contractors is due to start construction in June on the Mater Hospital’s $52 million Stage One Pimlico development.
The project is expected to create more than 200 jobs, with CPB committing to using 80 percent local contractors.
Mater chairman Patrick Brady said the redevelopment had involved many years of detailed planning.
``A project of this size not only delivers increased health services it creates a boost to the local economy through construction jobs and increased employment opportunities in the health care sector,’’ he said.
Mr Brady said CPB Contractors had constructed some of Australia’s newest and most important health facilities, including the new Royal Adelaide Hospital and Sydney’s Royal North Shore Hospital.
``CPB Contractors not only had the construction track record and expertise they are also committed to using 80 percent local contractors,” Mr Brady said.
The Stage One development will include a dedicated new entry to the hospital, new medical imaging facilities, an expanded day surgery and an additional four operating theatres integrated into the hospital’s Lothair St wing.
Preliminary work on the site began this week (April 26) with Ergon Energy removing power poles and lights.
More enabling work on the site will be undertaken in the coming weeks ahead of the June construction start.
Gladstone Ports Corporation (GPC) has acknowledged the efforts of eight former employees and board members, through the official naming of Port of Gladstone roads.
John Bates, Noel Bowley, Ian Brusasco, Ian Drury, Graham Fenton, Les Jones, Christine Mossman (nee Martin) and Bernie Muir will now feature on signage and maps at Fisherman’s Landing, Gladstone Marina and Port Central.
GPC chief executive officer Peter O’Sullivan said the eight former employees and board members all made significant contributions to the corporation’s operations.
“These talented and dedicated individuals recognised the importance and potential of GPC, its ports and its people,” Mr O’Sullivan said. “It is fitting to acknowledge their commitment with a lasting legacy that GPC employees are reminded of every day.”
The road names now in effect include: Fisherman’s Landing Graham Fenton Drive Ian Drury Drive Noel Bowley Way Bernie Muir Esplanade Gladstone Marina Ian Brusasco Drive Christine Martin Place Port Central John Bates Drive Les Jones Avenue