Games legacy to make Coast a global hub for innovation

Published Wednesday, 11 April, 2018 at 10:43 AM


Minister for State Development, Manufacturing, Infrastructure and Planning
The Honourable Cameron Dick

Minister for Innovation and Tourism Industry Development and Minister for the Commonwealth Games
The Honourable Kate Jones

From the moment the last athlete leaves the Commonwealth Games Village next week, work will begin on transforming the Gold Coast Health and Knowledge Precinct into one of the most advanced health and knowledge innovation hubs in the Asia-Pacific.

Thanks to the $550 million Health and Knowledge legacy project, the Precinct would support thousands of jobs for Queenslanders and will generate $2.9 billion for the economy in the next decade.

Minister for Innovation and the Commonwealth Games Kate Jones said investor interest was strong with four sites already earmarked for $200 million in commercial development after the Games.

“Perhaps the greatest legacy of the Commonwealth Games is what we’re doing to make the Gold Coast one of the world’s leading hubs for innovation in the health and knowledge sector,” she said.

“We know that the innovation, technology and health sectors are where the jobs will be in the next 10 to 20 years.

“That’s why we’ve used billions of dollars in Commonwealth Games legacy funding to create the jobs of the future right here on the Gold Coast.”

The new precinct in what is now the Athletes’ Village, is located with the Gold Coast University Hospital, the new Gold Coast Private Hospital and Griffith University, forming a unique 200-hectare high-tech hub.

Minister for State Development, Manufacturing, Infrastructure and Planning Cameron Dick said the Precinct had the potential to become a world-class biomedical and health technology advancement and research centre.

“The Precinct is one of the biggest and most exciting legacy investments for the Games, and is expected to support 26,000 full-time jobs once fully developed and occupied,” he said.

“This Precinct will house some of Australia’s leading scientists, research institutes and facilities and will act as a drawcard to attract highly skilled workers to Queensland and build job opportunities.”

Mr Dick said work was underway between his Department and Precinct partners to facilitate development agreements with both global and local health and knowledge businesses which complemented the specialised health, research and innovation activities of surrounding facilities.

“We expect the Precinct will feature a range of large and small health and knowledge businesses which will seek to either build and own their own facilities or to co-locate,” he said.

GC2018 legacy achievements which will occur post-Games include:

  • The Village will be converted by the private sector owner to provide 1,252 residential apartments and townhouses and associated retail
  • Seven hectares of parkland adjacent to the Village will be handed over to Gold Coast City Council to manage and be opened to the public.
  • 15 individual development sites, yielding up to 200,000m2 of usable internal space, will be market-ready.

Ms Jones said one of the many organisations to move into the precinct would be Griffith University’s Advanced Design and Prototype Technologies Institute (ADaPT) - an $80 million project that will see one of the world’s most high-tech three-dimensional printers installed on-site.

“This 3D printer will be used to print specialist medical instruments and the technology will advance to print body parts like bones and organs for patients down the track,” she said.

“The prototype of this printer is already working at Griffith today. It’s a testament to the world-class innovation that’s taking place here on the Gold Coast.

“And it’s not just the health sector that will benefit from this new technology - Griffith Industrial Design program lead Dr Sam Canning designed the world’s first full-length, 3D printed dress.”

Ms Jones said she would continue to work with Griffith University to maximise the legacy of the Commonwealth Games for the Gold Coast.

“I’m proud to have been part of a Labor Government that brought the Commonwealth Games to the Gold Coast,” she said.

“We built the $1.76 billion Gold Coast University Hospital, we delivered the $1.6 billion stage one and $500 million stage two of the Gold Coast Light Rail - that’s just the tip of the iceberg.

“Without the Games and the infrastructure we’ve been able to deliver on the Coast, projects like this would not be possible.”

Griffith University Vice Chancellor and President Professor Ian O’Connor AC said the new health and knowledge hub inside what is now the Commonwealth Games Village would be an important part of the precinct in years to come.

"Griffith University is at the forefront of 3D printing technology, working with global industry in the Gold Coast Health and Knowledge Precinct,” he said.

"Our new industry-focused Advanced Design and Prototyping Technologies Institute (ADaPT) will lead the way in new materials development, 3D modelling and advanced technologies that will transform design, manufacturing and medicine.

“The legacy of the Games provides a unique opportunity to attract commercial investment into the Gold Coast, attract even more global talent, and strongly position Queensland as a key driver of research and innovation in the Asia-Pacific.”

Media contacts:

Jack Harbour (Minister Jones) 0419 620 447
Anika Hume (Minister Dick) 0447 320 039