Townsville City Council has appointed BMD Constructions to complete a $55million utility upgrade which includes installing 20km of water and sewage pipes, replacing old mains and upgrading water storage infrastructure.

The four year upgrade aims to boost the local economy, increase jobs in the region and revitalise the inner city.

Work has already commenced on earthworks associated with the construction of a 32 megalitre reservoir in West End and minor upgrades in the Stanley St/Sturt St area.

The broader upgrade of utilities is scheduled to begin rolling out in the CBD later this year.

Some footpath and stormwater infrastructure will also be renewed in conjunction with the works to reduce the requirement for future construction impacts in the CBD.

The rolling program of works will have a strong focus on maximising opportunities for local suppliers and subcontractors and is expected to create more than 100 jobs.

Townsville mayor, Jenny Hill, said the upgrade was vital for new development and jobs, and achieving the target of 30,000 people living and working in the CBD by 2030.

“The CBD Utilities Upgrade is a defining infrastructure project for the city that will ensure we have the building blocks in place to better support the exciting Waterfront PDA proposal and other new development in the inner-city,” Ms Hill said.

“Importantly, this major infrastructure project will be also provide a stimulus for the local economy during the four-year construction period by providing work for local sub-contractors and workers.”

Water and Waste Committee chairman, Ray Gartrell, said sections of underground utilities in the inner-city were among the oldest in Townsville and lacked the capacity to support the city’s growth.

“This project involves considerable excavations and replacement of old pipework and mains over a large area in variable ground conditions. Following the tendering process the council is now in a position to finalise the scope, timetable and budget to ensure we get the most cost effective outcome,” Mr Gartrell said.

“The project will be carried out over a longer period to spread the cost and minimise the impacts on future budgets.”

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