Almost 50,000 jobs are expected to be supported in Queensland as the state outlined details of its intention to splurge $52.2 billion over four years on major infrastructure.

The Queensland government has released details of its pipeline of more than 1,000 state wise and regional projects which it intends to fund over the next four years as it spends.

All up, it includes $52.2 billion worth of works, $14.7 billion of which is allocated for 2021/22.

Key focus areas of the pipeline include:

  • Work associated with Olympic Games facilities, including work on construction of the Brisbane Area as a replacement for the aging Brisbane Entertainment Centre along with the redevelopment of the Gabba.
  • A range of projects associated with the SEQ City Deal and the Townsville City Deal
  • Remaining works on the Cross River Rail project which will create a second river crossing for rail passengers
  • Renewable energy including work associated with the Queensland Renewable Energy and Hydrogen Jobs Fund, which includes the establishment of three renewable energy zones.
  • Healthcare related works including a $2 billon Hospital Building Fund to assist in meeting growth pressures across the health system and a further $1.45 billion capital works program.
  • An $859 million program to deliver four new state schools in 2023 along with a further six new state schools in 2024.
  • Regional water security works including works associated with the Queensland Bulk Water Opportunities Statements; $70 million to regional councils over three years to improve water supply and sewerage works, the Southern Downs Drought Resilience Package and regional water assessments in food bowl areas of Southern and Darling Downs, Bundaberg and Burnett and Tablelands.

The government has also released a draft version of its 20-year State Infrastructure Strategy, which sets out the government’s approach for delivering infrastructure as well as creating liveable communities with essential services.

The strategy will be supported by seven regional plans.

Deputy Premier and Minister for State Development, Infrastructure, Local Government and Planning Dr Steven Miles welcomed the release of the pipeline and strategy.

Miles said the plan and pipeline reflected extensive stakeholder consultation. This included 13 regional workshops held across Queensland earlier in the year which were were attended by more than 270 stakeholders, in addition to more than 200 responses received through online engagement.

We have a pipeline of infrastructure projects that are creating jobs and boosting our economic recovery,” Mr Miles said.

“The Queensland Government Infrastructure Pipeline includes more than 1000 projects in delivery and planning, will provide industry with further confidence to invest in Queensland.

“In 2021-22, $14.7 billion – one of the largest capital programs in recent years – has been allocated, with more than 60 per cent being spent outside Greater Brisbane.

“This is expected to directly support around 46,500 jobs – nearly 30,000 of these in the regions.

“Our investment will support economic growth, create jobs, ensure the provision of high-quality services, and build resilient, connected, liveable communities.”

Master Builders Queensland Deputy CEO Paul Bidwell welcomed that the plan provided greater detail compared with what was in the budget but the plan falls short on the visibility it provides.

Ideally, Master Builders would have liked a quarter-by-quarter breakdown of each project including which would outline the quarter in which each project was expected to start along with the project’s anticipated duration and completion date.

Instead, the plan gives a list of projects by region and sector along with their anticipated completion date.

However, it does not give the anticipated start date for each project whilst completion timeframes are given on a yearly rather than quarterly basis.

“It gives us a bit more clarity than what the budget did,” Bidwell said.

But it’s still not something that people can go to and say, ‘I can look in this region and figure out what is being built and when.”

The full pipeline document can be viewed here.