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    Coat of ArmsMedia Release
    Minister for Infrastructure and Planning
    The Honourable Stirling Hinchliffe

    New defence and aerospace hub a step closer

    Minister for Infrastructure and Planning
    The Honourable Stirling Hinchliffe

    Saturday, July 03, 2010

    New defence and aerospace hub a step closer

    The Bligh Government’s proposed $150 million aerospace and aviation hub for Amberley has been approved by Ipswich City Council (ICC), Minister for Infrastructure and Planning Stirling Hinchliffe announced today.

    Mr Hinchliffe said ICC had signed off on the State Government’s 183ha Aerospace and Defence Support Centre next to the RAAF base west of Ipswich. He said the initiative would create up to 3500 jobs and promote Queensland as an aviation and defence industry hot spot.

    “The Aerospace and Defence Support Centre at Amberley will be the premier destination in South East Queensland for organisations seeking to provide services to the Australian Defence Force,’’ Mr Hinchliffe said.

    “Following Ipswich City Council’s approval, the State Government can progress what will be a hub for national defence, aviation and aerospace industries.

    “Queensland companies are already involved in major defence force projects for the delivery of the Tiger and MRH90 helicopters, Airborne Early Warning and Control aircraft and air-to-air refuelling planes.

    “The centre is expected to become a base for firms seeking contracts to service and maintain RAAF aircraft including the new fleet of $6 billion F/A-18F Super Hornets.

    “With more and more defence personnel calling Amberley home, the development of an Aerospace and Defence Support Centre is an investment in the future and a down payment in sustaining local hi-tech know-how.

    “A centre of aerospace innovation next door to the Amberley base could see Ipswich become an economic powerhouse with the ability to provide maintenance, repair, overhaul and engineering support and businesses.’’

    Mr Hinchliffe said the State Government had committed $30.5 million from the Estates Construction Fund to develop the project. This approval provides the basis for further proposals to secure funding for the planned $150 million facility.

    “This centre will provide services including aviation and aerospace maintenance and repairs, software and systems development, training, simulation, logistics and systems engineering,’’ Mr Hinchliffe said.

    “The precinct will also include an industrial precinct, with hangers, workshops, laboratories, offices, and training and common-user facilities.’’

    Ipswich City Council Mayor Paul Pisasale and council’s planning committee chairperson Cr Paul Tully said the State Government could now move forward with detailed planning for the ADSC-A which would provide a huge boost to the Ipswich community in terms of increasing the diversity of skills in the workforce and new jobs generated.

    “This site next to RAAF Base Amberley has the potential to position Ipswich as the Seattle of the southern hemisphere by creating a central hub for aviation excellence led by high technology aerospace and defence contractors,” Cr Pisasale said.

    “Suppliers to the industry will be able to plug-in to the emerging opportunities the centre will provide, including a full range of support services for the base via aircraft taxiway, roads and other essential infrastructure,” Cr Tully said.

    Federal Member for Blair Shayne Neumann said the ADSC-A site would also provide green space for public recreation.

    “The Aerospace and Defence Support Centre at Amberley has the potential to create up to 3500 jobs and numerous new industries,’’ Mr Neumann said.

    “In addition, 20.4ha of the 183ha site the centre is expected to become public parkland buffer.

    “That’s a large area that will effectively add to the nearby Warrill Creek environmental corridor, protect riparian margins and provide land for public recreation where people can relax, kick a ball or walk the dog.’’

    The announcement highlights the Bligh Government’s Toward Q2 green commitment of 50 per cent more land for public recreation in South East Queensland by 2020.

    The ADSC-A project has involved extensive community consultation with the local community, the Federal Department of Defence and the aerospace and defence industry. An open day to inform residents, stakeholders and interested businesses on the project was held on 10 April 2010.

    The next stage of the project involves additional design and engineering investigations as well as consideration of the development under the Federal Government’s Environmental Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act.

    The facility could be construction ready by 2012.

    Media contact: 0417 815 223