A Queensland-based tiling company has doubled its workforce to lay 4,000 square metres of tile around the Cairns Convention Centre as refurbishment works enter the home stretch.
Minister for Public Works and Procurement, the Hon. Mick de Brenni MP, said the company’s success confirms that the $176 million Cairns Convention Centre project has done exactly what the Buy Queensland policy intended – to create and support local jobs in the Far North.
“Floor to ceiling tiles in the Convention Centre kitchen and bathrooms required around 20,000 kilograms of adhesives and each one is being laid by a local,” the Minister said.
“With practical completion of refurbishment works on track for 31 March, local jobs will continue to be a major focus as expansion works continue until mid-2022.”
The Cairns Convention Centre refurbishment and expansion project will deliver an additional 10,000 square metres of meeting, banquet and exhibition space when completed.
The expanded centre is forecast to attract an additional 20,000 visitors to the region and inject up to $50 million into the local economy annually.
Minister de Brenni shared that 604 workers have been inducted to work on-site since construction on the project began in May 2020, with the procurement policy ensuring 515 are from the Far North.
“We’ve also awarded 78 trade packages and our support extends to 68 businesses supported through the supply chain.”
Assistant Minister for Tourism Industry Development and Member for Cairns, Michael Healy, added that stage two works has already kicked off.
“Piling works to support the foundations of the new expansion are well underway with some 320 piles being placed around the site as we speak, mapping out just how impressive the final product will be,” Mr Healy commented.
“In the next 12 months, we’ll start to see the large undercover forecourt, larger main entry and a 410-seat plenary lecture space take shape, which will help Cairns attract new conferences and events of greater size and complexity.”