BlueScope’s announcement that 200 hectares of surplus lands will be reimagined to drive the economic growth of the region has been welcomed by Business Illawarra, the region’s peak business organisation.
The company has said that a master planning process will commence to create a vision for the precinct that will complement existing steelworks and surrounding industrial operations.
This announcement follows BlueScope’s recent opening of its National Processing and Solutions centre (‘The Hub’) and its planned reline of Blast Furnace No. 6, all of which confirms that the steelworks and the broader Port Kembla area will remain an industrial powerhouse for decades to come.
“We have been championing a precinct approach to urban regeneration in this region for some time now, and so we are incredibly excited to see one of our region’s largest landholders in BlueScope take a decision to contribute so significantly to the Illawarra’s renewal,” said Business Illawarra Executive Director Adam Zarth.
“It is a unique opportunity for a land lot of this size to become available in such an ideal industrial location, adjacent to the steelworks and within a port precinct that has established road and rail connections.”
“Appointing an internationally renowned architectural firm which has significant experience re-planning sites like this to lead the master planning process is also a very welcome decision to ensure that the most innovative, functional and appealing environment possible is delivered.”
“This new site provides opportunities for businesses large and small from both outside and within the region to commence or expand operations in new and emerging industries supporting the renewables revolution and an expanding defence sector in Australia.”
“Instead of the nation’s transition to net zero by 2050 threatening the steelworks and local energy manufacturing industries as some feared, it is more likely to underpin future economic growth for the region and provide high paying and secure jobs for the community to prosper,” Mr Zarth said.
The master planning process will be undertaken over the next 18 months during which Business Illawarra will be actively involved in the planned community and business consultations and engagements as this special redevelopment unfolds.