Townsville’s $35 million TAFE upgrade in full swing

Construction is now underway on the major redevelopment of Townsville’s $35 million TAFE Queensland Pimlico campus.

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk announced the main construction contract had been awarded to Queensland builders Paynters Pty Ltd which had successfully completed a number of projects in Townsville including the NRL Cowboys House and at the Townsville Hospital.

“This project will revitalise the heart of the TAFE campus and construct the first new building on the site in more than 40 years,” Ms Palaszczuk said.

“The new two-storey development will generate almost 100 full time jobs including employment for about 15 apprentices and/or trainees and position the campus as the region’s specialised contemporary non-trade training centre.”

Deputy Premier and Treasurer Jackie Trad and Member for Mundingburra Coralee O’Rourke marked the start of construction, turning the first sod at a ceremony this morning.

“The Palaszczuk Government has invested $85 million over three years to upgrade TAFEs across the state and to give Queensland trainees and apprentices the best possible learning environments,” Ms Trad said.

“This upgrade will cater for the growth in student numbers being driven by our investment in Free TAFE and focus on skilling the next generation.

“The new facilities will complement the modern trade training facilities at Bohle and will create one central hub and make the Pimlico campus more lively and accessible for students.”

Member for Mundingburra Coralee O’Rourke said it was an exciting day and that the major refurbishment was going to make the world of difference to students studying at the campus.

“They will get the skills and training they need for not only today’s jobs but also for those of the future,” she said.

“Courses will focus on community services, health, hospitality and tourism, and general education and training.

“All program areas will benefit from these new, state-of-the-art facilities; however, the programs which will see the biggest impact will include nursing, hair and beauty and hospitality.

“The redevelopment will provide a simulated nursing ward, a new ground floor café, restaurant, training bar and cellar for access by the local community, and modern hair and beauty facilities, as well as general teaching and social learning spaces.”

Minister for Training and Skills Development Shannon Fentiman said training demand in Townsville is strong.

“It’s expected to continue to grow in the areas of health care and social assistance, professional, scientific and technical services and education and training,” Ms Fentiman said.

“This new facility will deliver the skilled workers we will need to fill the jobs of the future.

“Construction is expected to be finalised in late 2019.”

Currently more than 2,800 students are enrolled in more than 100 courses offered at the campus.

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