Watpac has been appointed as managing contractor for Townsville’s $250 million North Queensland Stadium and pledged to take early steps to create a pathway for local industry participation.
Stage one’s design and early works program will commence in coming weeks, with stage two to commence in 2018.
The project is expected to have a sustained peak workforce of nearly 400 people during construction.
Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, Queensland State Development Minister Dr Anthony Lynham and Townsville Mayor Jenny Hill officially announced Watpac’s appointment today.
They said Watpac had outlined a plan for more than 80 per cent of hours spent building the stadium to be by locals and at least 80 per cent of the value of the project to be spent on local subcontractors and suppliers.
Watpac will use the Queensland Government’s ICN Gateway at: www.northqueenslandstadium.icn.org.au as a source for tender registrations. Currently, 443 companies have registered their interest for work packages through the ICN Gateway, with 182 or 41 per cent, based in north Queensland.
Watpac Construction Northern Region manager Bryan Glancy said the contract announcement was an exciting milestone for the group’s Townsville team and the north Queensland community.
“Watpac has been a part of the Townsville community for nearly 20 years and we’re delighted to be working with the Queensland Government to deliver this significant piece of sporting infrastructure,” Mr Glancy said.
“Our team has extensive sporting infrastructure experience having delivered some of Queensland’s most iconic grounds including the Gabba, and Suncorp and Metricon stadiums, so it’s exciting to be building this first-class facility for the people of north Queensland and their favourite footy team – the North Queensland Cowboys.
With the project expected to engage with more than 2000 people across the design and construction phases, Mr Glancy said Watpac was looking forward to working with local businesses to deliver the 25,000-seat stadium.
“This project will draw on our expertise while bringing together local businesses to offer various opportunities for North Queensland residents,” he said.
“We’ve a strong record when it comes to engaging with local trades and suppliers as a priority for our projects and we will look to continue this over the course of the stadium’s construction.”
Other Watpac projects in the region have included the Australian Institute of Tropical Health and Medicine and Translational Research Facility at James Cook University, the Riverway Arts Centre and Lagoons and Riverway Stadium (Tony Ireland Stadium), and a number of facilities at Lavarack Barracks.
Watpac said it would draw on its local relationships to create opportunities for trade tenderers.
“We will be working with interested parties early on to create a pathway for local industry participation,” Mr Glancy said.
“Our priority is to deliver an iconic sporting stadium for the North Queensland community and while doing so provide indigenous employment opportunities, business participation and job upskilling where possible for the region.”
The North Queensland Stadium is a joint project of the Australian Government, Queensland Government and Townsville City Council and is supported by both the National Rugby League and the North Queensland Cowboys. The North Queensland Stadium forms part of the Townsville City Deal signed in 2016.