The Gold Coast’s Construction Kickstart program has drawn to a close, and initial figures show the results have far exceeded predictions.
Kickstart began in October 2012 and concluded in September this year and created a massive 9,500 opportunities for Gold Coast apprenticeships and employment, compared to the previous forecast of just 4,000 jobs in the area.
The program was designed to create short-term construction jobs by encouraging construction activity. Over the past year, Kickstart oversaw the commencement of 282 projects, including 55 industrial developments.
The figures show Construction Kickstart has been an overwhelming success, said Mayor Tom Tate.
“This initiative was always about creating jobs and encouraging development activity and it’s certainly done that. When we launched the projects, we estimated 4,000 jobs would be created so to reach an estimate of 9,500 is fantastic,” Mr Tate said in a November 14 media release.
In addition to the almost 10,000 short-term jobs created by the program, figures show that more than 2,000 long-term jobs have also come from this initiative.
“Employment generating products such as industrial and retail will provide a triple benefit to the city by creating construction employment and ongoing operational employment, as well as fuelling residential housing demand,” Urban Development Institute of Australia Gold Coast Logan Branch President David Ransom said.
The program has encouraged a variety of construction programs over the past year, from big time developers lodging applications for high rise apartments, to the everyday residents doing a small subdivision.
“All these development are reinforcing our ‘open for business’ message and helping strengthen our city’s economy,” Mr Tate said.
Kickstart’s phase one chapter offered a 100 per cent discount on transport, recreation facilities and stormwater infrastructure charges, while phase two awarded a 50 per cent discount on the same expenses.
Phase one included any commencements that began between October 2012 and the end of April 2013 with a completion date before March 2015.
Phase two covered projects with commencements between March 2013 and the end of September this year, with a completion by the end of March 2015.
Although the Kickstart program has now closed, 38 of the eligible projects are still underway, creating employment opportunities in the Gold Coast.
The more iconic projects that benefited from Kickstart include a 41 storey residential tower, childcare centre and sports facility.