Another significant milestone for the University of Tasmania’s new Inveresk campus has been reached with a major tender awarded to a leading Tasmanian construction firm.
In a project set to further stimulate the economy in Northern Tasmania, Fairbrother Pty Ltd has won the main construction contract for the university’s $45 million River’s Edge building.
The new Inveresk campus is being delivered through a $283 million partnership between the Australian and Tasmanian governments, the City of Launceston and the university.
Minister for Communications, Urban Infrastructure, Cities and the Arts, the Hon Paul Fletcher MP, said the project was a key initiative under the Launceston City Deal to establish Launceston as one of Australia’s most innovative and liveable regional cities.
“The project will revitalise the region’s economy and during construction will create about 100 full-time equivalent jobs, including for apprentices,” Minister Fletcher said.
Minister for Education and Youth, the Hon Alan Tudge MP, said the development would provide Northern Tasmania with world-class learning facilities.
“These facilities will strengthen links between the university and industry, government and businesses in the region, and encourage growth, innovation and productivity,” Minister Tudge said.
“The new campus is expected to host 10,000 students by 2032 and will deliver courses to address skills shortages and improve employment outcomes in Northern Tasmania.”
Tasmanian Minister for State Growth, the Hon Michael Ferguson MP, congratulated Fairbrother and said he looked forward to seeing construction begin soon.
“This project will mean more jobs for locals, capitalising on the skills pipeline we have been building through a concerted vocational training push in the region,” Minister Ferguson said.
“It is one of the largest infrastructure projects in Launceston’s history and we’re pleased to have one of Tasmania’s leading construction companies building River’s Edge.”
Federal Member for Bass, Bridget Archer MP, said early works started in late January to prepare the foundations for the River’s Edge building.
“This is the second of three new university buildings that will be constructed on the new campus between now and 2024,” Ms Archer said.
“The staged approach to construction is maximising economic benefit and supporting local industry.”
University of Tasmania Vice-Chancellor, Professor Rufus Black, said at such a critical time for economies around the world, delivering the Northern Transformation Program was crucial for the region’s growth.
“Supporting the regional economy has always been an important goal for the university and our partners, so it is exciting to see significant direct and indirect benefits flow into the community when it is needed most,” Professor Black said.
“For years to come, the education, research and innovation that will happen in the Inveresk Precinct will support and shape the future of Launceston, our island and beyond.”
Fairbrother General Manager, Kurt Arnold, said the company was proud to be involved in a project that was so important to Northern Tasmania.
“The significant construction program will enable our continued commitment to the Tasmanian construction industry, employing local tradespeople, businesses and suppliers,” Mr Arnold said.
“It also provides a unique and challenging project on which to train and educate our young apprentices.”
The River’s Edge building designed by John Wardle Architects, is the second of three new university buildings that will be developed at the Inveresk campus between now and 2024. The River’s Edge building is scheduled for completion at the end of 2022.