THE Ballarat West Employment Zone (BWEZ) is expected to create up to 9000 jobs and inject $5 billion per annum into the Ballarat economy. The City of Ballarat has been working on BWEZ for five years in partnership with Regional Development Victoria and Major Projects Victoria.
It is part of the City of Ballarat’s exciting plans to develop the Ballarat economy to meet the employment and service needs of the city’s growing popula tion.
The project budget for BWEZ Stage 1 is $30.169 million.
Regional Development Victoria has allocated $25.169 million and the City of Ballarat has delivered $5 million.
The Hon, Jaala Pulford Minister for Regional Development announced another two businesses who would be relocating to BWEZ.
“This is about creating industrial land for Ballarat to grow jobs into the future,” she said. “It’s such an important project and it’s wonderful to see this next milestone.” Broadbent Grain’s was confirmed a while ago as the first tenant of BWEZ and now another two local companies, agricultural machinery specialist Agrimac and freight distribution company Kane Transport are the second and third land-owners within the precinct. Agrimac has purchased a 1.84 hectare lot to build a new dealership and service centre as part of the company’s expansion of its western Victorian operations, where it will employ up to 25 people. Ballarat-based freight distribution company Kane Transport has purchased a 1.8 hectare lot to build a new warehouse and depot facility.
The company’s new development will employ 17 people at a more efficient and safer warehouse operation in closer to interstate transport links and central Ballarat.
“These businesses will be in a location that is so accessible, connected to so many of those important road networks to access markets and transport goods to our South, to our west, north and east and that’s really the beauty of the location,” Ms Pulford said. Paul Kane said he was very proud to be involved in the BWEZ development. “This is where I grew up, this is where family is and BWEZ has given Kane’s Transport the opportunity t o grow and expand the business,” he said. “This project has given Kane Transport the opportunity to further expand the business, which has been operating in Ballarat for 20 years.”
With only 10 per cent of the lots sold so far Ms Pulford said the expressions of interest had been very strong and the City of Ballarat and Regional Development Victoria continue to work closely on assessing those. “I’m very confident that it will be a very, very busy site. This is stage 1 and there is enormous potential here, “she said. “This is a project that is about making sure that we have land supply for this kind of development for 20 years, it was never going to happen overnight, it was not meant to happen overnight, if it did we would have got the size wrong.” City of Ballarat Mayor Cr Des Hudson added that it was a great day in terms of the progression of BWEZ. “This has been an aspect that council has been talking about and planning and working with the State Government and Regional Development Victoria for some time,” he said. “We identified that BWEZ is our jobs incubator, we aim for 9,000 jobs, which we know will generate in the vicinity of $3billion worth of economic activity annually.
“So to see two more tenants come in is further confidence in Ballarat and further confidence in what BWEZ is about to growing those jobs for the future for our growing City.”