Development entity to spur city’s economic activation

Date published: 27 June 2017

Townsville City Council has approved the creation of a development corporation to unlock council owned land for development and economic activation.

The decision fulfils a council election promise and meets a commitment in the Townsville City Deal agreement with the Australian and Queensland Governments to establish the special entity by June 30.

Mayor Cr Jenny Hill said the enterprise body would be similar to successful development corporations created by other councils in Queensland to generate new projects and investment.

“The development corporation will be driving force behind unlocking the potential of prime council owned land in the Townsville PDA to stimulate investment, construction and jobs,” Cr Hill said.

“This is an initiative that I have championed for some time now to free up sites in the PDA like the former northern rail yards to exciting and innovative development.

“The council has consulted with business, community leaders and the State Government, and is now proceeding with the proposal after receiving widespread support.

“As the owner of the land, the council will maintain control over any decisions on behalf of the community.

“By establishing the development corporation, the city will have a dedicated public entity with the sole purpose of activating council owned land in the Townsville PDA and other strategic areas.

“It will open up major new opportunities for public and private investment in and potentially even partnerships.”

The Townsville development corporation will be established in line with the provisions for councils to form beneficial enterprises under the Local Government Act 2009.

Under the arrangements, strategic sites will be transferred to the development corporation which will negotiate land uses developments of sites based on business cases approved by the development corporation board and council.

The make-up of the board will comprise the Mayor, council’s Chief Executive Officer, Chief Financial Officer and Director of Planning and two independent directors who will be confirmed in coming weeks.