Ipswich Show Project. Ipswich Showgrounds Phase 1 extension photographs shows the progression of the development. Ipswich Show Project project manager Richard Ernst, Ipswich Show Society president Rusty Thomas and Condev Construction site manager Laurie Prior.
Ipswich Show Project. Ipswich Showgrounds Phase 1 extension photographs shows the progression of the development. Ipswich Show Project project manager Richard Ernst, Ipswich Show Society president Rusty Thomas and Condev Construction site manager Laurie Prior. Rob Williams

FIRST LOOK: Ipswich Showgrounds upgrades under way

THE first phase of the Ipswich Show Project is 60 per cent complete and on target to be finished in time for Christmas.

The initial work includes $6.5 million in upgrades to the indoor sports centre and an extension to the exhibits pavilion at the Ipswich Showgrounds.

Ipswich Show Project project manager Richard Ernst said work is ahead of schedule and, once completed, will increase the floorspace of the facility by 40 per cent.

"We're extending the exhibits display pavilion 16m to the east and 8m to the west.” Mr Ernst said.

"Two of the old caged-bird pavilions had to be demolished and removed to make way for the extension, but in their place will be a new foyer, bar area, and an open-air terrace.”

The plaza between the pavilion and the indoor sports centre will be upgraded and will feature a roof connecting and extending the length of the two buildings.

"The indoor sports centre will feature a new kitchen, office and storage facility and will have a new over-roof structure and louvres that will improve the insulation of the building,” Mr Ernst said.

"Ipswich people can expect much more modernised facilities that will look brand spanking new.”

Mr Ernst is confident the second phase of the project will start soon.

"Our planning and design work for the new convention and exhibition centre in another part of the Ipswich Showground is well under way and we will be looking at lodging a development application for that by the end of this year,” he said.

The Ipswich Show Society received an $8.9 million grant from the Federal Government towards its 10-year, $65 million plan to upgrade the showgrounds over three stages.

The showgrounds will ultimately feature 11 different world-class venues, including an emergency evacuation centre to accommodate more than 300 people.


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