Watpac to deliver military vehicle manufacturing facility in Ipswich
Published Saturday, 12 May, 2018 at 09:00 AM
Minister for State Development, Manufacturing, Infrastructure and Planning
The Honourable Cameron Dick
Watpac has been appointed managing contractor to build the $170 million Military Vehicle Centre of Excellence (MILVEHCOE) for Rheinmetall Defence Australia at Redbank, in Ipswich, supporting 300 jobs a year over two years.
Minister for State Development, Manufacturing, Infrastructure and Planning Cameron Dick said earthworks are expected to start by mid-year, building works by the end of the year, and the facility completed by the end of 2020.
“The Military Vehicle Centre of Excellence will be the base for Rheinmetall to deliver the $5.2 billion LAND 400 Phase 2 contract for next-generation combat reconnaissance vehicles for the Australian Army,” Mr Dick said.
“Progress is well underway with GHD completing the initial designs - work they will finalise in association with Watpac - and the development application has been approved by Ipswich City Council.
“Watpac has built several large-scale construction projects across Queensland and is committed to using the highly-skilled construction workforce at Ipswich and across South East Queensland.
“Bulk earthworks to prepare the Redbank Motorway Estate site for construction will begin after Rheinmetall has concluded its contract negotiations with the Australian Government, which we expect will be mid-year.”
Mr Dick said a key element of Rheinmetall’s LAND 400 bid was its commitment to establish its Australia-New Zealand Headquarters and Military Vehicle Centre of Excellence in South East Queensland.
“The MILVEHCOE’s location at Redbank puts it in the heart of the largest heavy vehicle manufacturing and sustainment hub in the country,” Mr Dick said.
“This facility will be Rheinmetall’s largest presence outside of Germany, and will manage the delivery and continued development and sustainment of the initial 211 Boxer combat reconnaissance vehicles under LAND 400 Phase 2, and accommodate Rheinmetall’s other defence projects.
“It will serve as a regional hub with an expected program of continuous design, manufacture and support for up to 5000 military vehicles across Australia and the Asia Pacific.
“The attraction of global defence giant Rheinmetall to Queensland is an economic game-changer for the state’s burgeoning defence sector and for the government’s commitment in creating the highly skilled jobs of the future.
“While plans for the Redbank facility continues here at home, Queensland workers will be based in Rheinmetall’s German factory to help manufacture the first 25 Boxer vehicles and learn the technological skills to bring home.
“They will return to Queensland to install the systems integration into these 25 vehicles - giving the Army much earlier capability than they would have otherwise.
“This project highlights Queensland’s rapidly rising profile as the nation’s leading supplier of next-generation defence technologies.
“The Queensland Government’s expertise in delivering large and complex capital works projects, on display through the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games venue infrastructure program, will again come to the fore in overseeing the construction of the MILVEHCOE on Rheinmetall’s behalf.”
Businesses with an interest in participating in the construction of the MILVEHCOE are encouraged to register on the ICN Gateway.
For more information, visit www.dsdmip.qld.gov.au/LAND400
Media contact: Catherine Palmer 0424 823 424