Herston Quarter preferred tenderer announced

Published Sunday, 14 August, 2016 at 12:30 PM


Premier and Minister for the Arts
The Honourable Annastacia Palaszczuk

Minister for Health and Minister for Ambulance Services
The Honourable Cameron Dick

Health and financial services company Australian Unity has been announced as the preferred tenderer to develop the site of the former children’s hospital at Herston in Brisbane and create a $1.1 billion health, aged care, residential and retail destination.

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said the Australian Unity proposal would deliver on the government’s aim to elevate Brisbane’s health credentials and cement the broader Herston Health Precinct as home to globally recognised health care, research, education, clinical trials and treatments.

“This project will be a milestone in Brisbane’s history and will further enhance the world-class reputation of the broader Herston Health Precinct,” Ms Palaszczuk said.

“The tradition of public health services on the site will also continue, with my government’s commitment to deliver a new 132 bed Specialist Rehabilitation and Ambulatory Care Centre.

“This redevelopment will cement Brisbane’s position as a truly international city, with a health and research precinct that will help Queensland to attract and retain the best clinicians, health workers, researchers, academics and students,” she said.

“It really is a project that will deliver vital services and jobs for Queensland now and into the future,” she said.

Treasurer Curtis Pitt said Australian Unity has been selected as the preferred tenderer after a comprehensive competitive process conducted by Queensland Treasury.

“That process considered how the site could most effectively be used to achieve the government’s vision for a health-focussed precinct within its requirement that it be delivered at no net cost to the State,” Mr Pitt said.

“This development, over a five-hectare site adjacent to the Royal Brisbane and Women’s Hospital, will provide significant economic development opportunities for Queensland, supporting 700 jobs annually during the 10-year development period and hundreds of jobs annually through operation, as estimated by Australian Unity.

“Queensland Treasury’s project team will continue working with Australian Unity on the redevelopment of the site that will put Herston Health Precinct on the map globally, rejuvenate iconic heritage buildings and deliver wonderful public spaces for people to enjoy.

“This redevelopment will be delivered at no net cost to the State, which is a tremendous outcome and a terrific example of how the government and the private sector can work together to achieve mutually beneficial outcomes.

“With an investment of more than $1 billion, the Herston Health Precinct is exactly the type of development we need to drive jobs and growth with real community benefits through increased health service delivery,” Mr Pitt said

Health and Ambulance Services Minister Cameron Dick said that having a 132-bed Specialist Rehabilitation and Ambulatory Centre in the development would help the entire health system.

“This is a new model of care for Queensland that will reduce waiting lists and improve health service efficiency,” he said.

“I’m delighted that this proposal allows for that.”

Minister and Member for Brisbane Central, Grace Grace, said the views of the local community and doctors, nurses and patients of the RBWH had contributed to the project.

“We have listened to health workers and the community and Australian Unity’s plans for the site reflect this,” Ms Grace said.

“The heritage buildings on the site, which are in need of significant repair and investment, will be rejuvenated and are at the heart of the redevelopment.

“Australian Unity also intends to make a multi-million dollar investment in the public realm to create a variety of attractive, accessible and comfortable new public spaces for visitors and residents to enjoy.”

As one of Australia’s oldest mutual organisations, Australian Unity has no external shareholders and instead focusses on delivering community value, through projects and products that solve individual and community needs.

Australian Unity Group Managing Director Rohan Mead said the company currently provided healthcare, financial services, retirement living and aged care services to almost one million customers throughout Australia.

“As the developer and operator of retirement living and aged care facilities at the Herston Quarter, we are here for the long haul, not just the construction phase,” Mr Mead said.

“We have been active in the community for 175 years and look forward to developing the Herston Quarter for Queenslanders and as an ongoing base for our strengthened community involvement in Queensland.”

He said Australian Unity’s vision for the Herston Quarter planned to establish:

  • a diverse health community delivering health and hospital services, aged care, research, education and supporting and complementary uses
  • a ‘wellbeing community’ that creates places for people to live, learn, work, research and thrive
  • an intergenerational supported community where people of all ages and abilities connect and interact.

As part of the master plan and in line with the government’s vision for the site, Australian Unity will also deliver a 132-bed public Specialist Rehabilitation and Ambulatory Care Centre for Metro North Hospital and Health Service to operate.

The SRACC will comprise 100 rehabilitation beds, special purpose rehabilitation support areas and a surgical and endoscopic centre with a 32-bed surgical inpatient room, seven operating theatres, three endoscopy rooms and recovery spaces.

The public health facility will be complemented by a range of health and wellbeing developments, including a private hospital; aged care, retirement living, residential and student accommodation; retail and commercial space; childcare and new public spaces.

Works are expected to start in 2017 and the redevelopment will occur in stages over the next 10 years with the public health facility being a priority. A small project team will be embedded in Metro North Hospital and Health service to manage delivery of the project. 

For more information, visit www.qld.gov.au/herstonquarter

Australian Unity: www.australianunity.com.au

Media Contacts

  • Premier’s Office: Susan McGrady 0488 996 667
  • Treasurer’s Office: Lindsay Marshall  0447 316  432
  • Health Minister’s Office:  Laura Gowdie 0413 492 117