100s of workers needed for $235m defence project
A $235 million defence project which includes a new simulation training centre for Townsville will need hundreds of workers by November.
A $40 million three-storey "simulator facility" which will be used by the 3rd Brigade's troops at Lavarack Barracks under the Defence Department's national Armoured Fighting Vehicle Facilities Program Stage 1 Works, was approved by parliament in mid-June.
A Defence Department spokeswoman said the works at Lavarack Barracks is being planned for 360 people for approximately 50 subcontractor packages over a two-year construction period.
The head contract for the works at the army base is expected to be awarded by November this year, with construction expected to begin shortly after.
The facility will help train Townsville personnel to operate the new fleet of armoured vehicles being procured by defence, and will include a "simulation centre, simulators and classrooms".
The army is wanting to replace the current set of armoured vehicle with the next generation of infantry fighting vehicles.
The ageing in-service M113 Armoured Personnel Carriers will be 60 years-old by the time the planned replacement happens.
In a submission from the Defence Department, the project will focus on "maximising" the use of Townsville and North Queensland businesses.
The Defence spokeswoman said consultation regarding the Armoured Fighting Vehicles Facilities Program - Stage 1 was undertaken in February and March, with the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Public Works convening a hearing on the project in early May.
The project will also provide a range of infrastructure works around the country.
They will take place at three Defence bases across Australia including the Puckapunyal Military Area in Victoria, Lavarack Barracks and the Edinburgh Defence Precinct in South Australia with a total project value of $235 million.
Herbert MP Phil Thompson previously told the Townsville Bulletin he will be working with Defence Minister Linda Reynolds and Defence Industry Minister Price about procurement and tender strategies to ensure North Queensland businesses will have opportunities at securing contracts, keeping the money in the region.
Originally published as 100s of workers needed for $235m defence project