Wellcamp Hub Almost Built While Federal Facility Gets Scaled Back

Miles takes ‘them at their word’


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Pandemic politics continues to play out between state and federal governments with Queensland quarantine hubs the latest battleground.

Queensland Deputy Premier Steven Miles has taken aim at Canberra, announcing that the privately built quarantine hub near Toowoomba is almost built, just as scaled-back plans were made public for the Commonwealth build facility set on Defence Department land in Pinkenba.

Stay up-to-date on the latest news with The Queensland Briefing - keeping you in the loop with breaking news as it hits.

Defending the point of having two facilities, Mr Miles on Tuesday said the Wellcamp Airport facility was in the pipeline, well before the federal governments Brisbane hub.

Expected to be ready by Christmas, the Toowoomba facility, built by the Wagner Corporation near its Wellcamp Airport, will provide 1000 beds for unvaccinated domestic travellers from hotspot regions and unvaccinated returning travellers from overseas. 

It’s expected that about 250 beds at Wellcamp will be assumed by international students before Semester 1 next year, while further beds could be taken up by agriculture workers.

The topic of much controversy, Queensland’s first dedicated regional quarantine facility hopes to build resilience should there be a community outbreak or if a new Covid strain emerges in the future. 

“Our use of border controls, quarantine measures and vaccinations have so far kept us one step ahead of the delta virus," Mr Miles stated.

“As we look to our future of living with COVID we need to proceed in a measured, cautious and safe way to bring Queenslanders home and that includes a network of quarantine options such as quarantine facilities and home quarantine arrangements.”

However, the Deputy Premier has cast some doubt over the accommodation at Pikenba.

"Oh well, let’s see if the second facility gets built, but I'll take them at their word," he said.

"They said they'll have it built by April next year and we're doing everything that we can to be ready to manage it for them after that point in time but let’s remember that both stages of our Wellcamp facility will be built by then".

- DP Steven Miles

Meanwhile, Federal Finance Minister Simon Birmingham said the Pinkenba site, will become the nation's resilience hub, facilitating accommodation needs in the event of pandemics and natural disasters.

Looking further ahead post-pandemic, the Wellcamp hub is marked to be used as worker accommodation for the multibillion-dollar inland rail project, while the decision over who quarantines at the Pinkenba facility will be left up to the Queensland government to decide.

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Hit News Team

3 November 2021

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Hit News Team




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