THE TEN thousand apartments to be built at Springfield Central are set to transform Ipswich and contribute up to a stunning 10% of the city’s predicted population growth in the next two decades.
Who knows, just like exists in similar suburban centres in Vancouver, Ipswich may well boast driverless trains going back and forth from Springfield Central to service commuters working in Brisbane and in other parts of Ipswich.
As reported earlier this month by the QT, the $6.3 billion development over 15 years has been made possible through Chinese investment and a deal struck between Springfield Land Corporation (SLC) and China’s Etone Australia Developments and R&F Properties.
SLC chairman Maha Sinnathamby told The Weekend Australian at the signing ceremony between the parties that the development would “be transformational for the Ipswich region”.
Deputy mayor Paul Tully has been an Ipswich councillor for 38 years and said Ipswich had not seen anything like the scale of development planned and that it would drive the projected exponential growth of the city.
Factoring in a conservative figure of two people per apartment, the development could house up to 20,000 people by completion.
“Now that we have just hit 200,000 our prediction is that we will double our population in the next 20 years,” Cr Tully said.
“This apartment development alone means that we are well on track to do that and will strengthen our position as the fastest growing city in Queensland.”
Cr Tully said that in the town centre area of Springfield, with the commercial development coming and the apartments being constructed just five minutes from the railway station and next to Orion Shopping Centre, it would mean “a complete transition from what Ipswich has ever seen”.
“There will be upmarket stores, coffee shops and restaurants all serving the people who live in the 10,000 apartments,” he said.
Cr Tully said he had visited a similar suburban satellite centre of Vancouver and the potential for the use of new technologies afforded by the apartment development was exciting.
“In Vancouver, Canada they have driverless trains going from the the heart of Vancouver taking commuters to and from the fringes of the city where people live in suburbia,” Cr Tully said.
“They take people into the city for jobs.
“We have driverless cars coming (to Ipswich) and I think driverless trains are the next likely. They work well in Vancouver and are fully automated.
“We are on the edge of a major technological transition and I think this apartment development is just fabulous news for the eastern suburbs of Ipswich.”
Cr Tully said the development slated for
Springfield Central would also attract retirees seeking a more relaxed suburban atmosphere than the one available to them in Brisbane high rise apartments.
“There will be a lot of people who might be of retirement age who want to remain independent rather than move into a retirement village and this will be perfect,” he said.
“So they will be hitting the market at just the right time.”
Cr Tully said it was heartening to see such investment confidence in the city from abroad.
“It is a king’s ransom of money coming from China to Ipswich,” he said.