THREE major industry bodies have joined together to back the University of Tasmania’s plans to relocate the Launceston campus to Inveresk.
The support comes in the form of an open letter co-signed by the Property Council of Australia, the Civil Contractors Federation and Master Builders Tasmania.
Property Council of Australia Tasmanian executive director Brian Wightman said it would not be unreasonable to expect a decade of construction opportunities from the development.
“This is a significant opportunity for investment in Launceston and a significant opportunity for not just education but for construction,” he said.
Civil Contractors Federation Tasmanian Branch treasurer Naomi Walsh said the proposed move would help to create sustained opportunities to provide apprenticeships, experience and growth.
”I think it’s really important to put people through the training process in the industry and then retain them in the area,” she said.
“We’ve got a lot of workers working in Hobart travelling each week away from their families, but at the end of the day they want to be with their families, and building their skills and contributing in the North.”
Mr Wightman asked locals to get behind the idea, and said Launceston needed to grasp the opportunity with both hands.
“Construction and property plays a major role in the Tasmanian economy,” he said. “It provides jobs for our young people and provides jobs for families, which encourages them to stay within the region and that’s exactly what Northern Tasmania needs.”
The industry leaders urged anyone uncertain about the benefits of the proposal, to look at other examples across the world. “Vibrant cities have vibrant universities… [and] having students and young people around the town and city helps create that vibrancy,” Mr Wightman said.
Vibrant cities have vibrant universities… [and] having students and young people around the town and city helps create that vibrancy.Brian Wightman
Mrs Walsh said the project would also help to create aspirations around education.
“If you’ve got that vibrant community there is more motivation for people to stay and build up that experience and skill base here,” she said.