Ipswich SES Depot upgrade complete

An $811,000 upgrade to support State Emergency Service volunteers has been completed, with the works supporting increased volunteer capacity, and improved amenity during responses to natural disasters in the region.

The upgrade, jointly funded with $686,000 from the Queensland Government’s COVID Works for Queensland program, saw the construction of new toilet and shower facilities, new air conditioning, electrics, IT equipment, new laundry, cleaning room, and landscaped outdoor areas.

Local Disaster Management Group Chair, Mayor Teresa Harding, said the upgrade would support more volunteers responding to storms, floods, fires, and other disasters.

“Built in the 1970s, the tired and outdated depot was struggling to hold the growing number of volunteers using the space,” Mayor Harding said.

“Volunteers are the lifeblood of the SES, and our Orange Angels do fantastic work for the city both during disasters, and in our community, on a regular basis, and it’s only right that we support them as best we can.”

State Member for Ipswich Jennifer Howard welcomed the construction, highlighting the work also provided economic stimulus to support local business during the ongoing pandemic disruption.

“This new SES Depot will be a critical component of future disaster relief and prevention,” Ms Howard said.

“Queensland’s plan for economic recovery has already begun, with projects like these delivering additional jobs for locals and disaster-proofing Ipswich.

“I’m excited that the State Government has been able to not only help support the great work done by the SES, but also help keep local business in work.”

Deputy Chair of Local Disaster Management Group, Councillor Kunzelmann, said the new facilities make a big difference to the city’s ability to cater for its growing volunteer community.

“The much-needed upgrade was highlighted in the hailstorm of October 2020, when over 60 volunteers were based in the crowded depot, sharing limited amenities with no showers and a small outdoor space,” Cr Kunzelmann said.

“Since the completed works, there is a new sheltered outdoor area with ample seating for volunteers to rest and a welcome respite zone during emergency response events.

“As Ipswich’s SES volunteer community grows, these upgraded amenities will help cater for their needs and enable our volunteers to juggle both work and volunteering.”

The $811,000 upgrade was delivered over a five-month period from February to June 2021.

The upgrade to the SES facility is one of many happening around Ipswich City Council area to support our growing community.

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