Charter Hall Group and Western Sydney University have marked the start of construction of their $350 million ‘Innovation Quarter’ project (iQ) in Westmead.
Charter Hall’s managing director and CEO David Harrison and Western Sydney University’s vice-president (Finance and Resources) Peter Pickering hosted a groundbreaking event on-site. Guests included the NSW minister for jobs and investment, Stuart Ayres.
The development will deliver a hub of over 43,000 square metres of critical health, education, research and business space. It is also expected to create over 1,000 jobs during construction.
The groundbreaking coincided with the announcement CSIRO will be an IQ tenant. It will be joined by three of Western Sydney University’s research institutes – the MARCS Institute for Brain, Behaviour and Development; NICM Health Research Institute; and, Translational Health Research Institute (THRI).
According to Charter Hall's Mr Harrison, “There’s never been a more important time to focus on health research and innovation. Our project collaboration with Western Sydney University will deliver a state of the art innovation centre to support the work of both the Western Sydney University and CSIRO’s medical research facilities.
“iQ will be a truly visionary precinct that brings together the most forward-thinking research, health, education and commercial sectors in the Southern Hemisphere. The project will provide an environment for some of the brightest minds in the country to innovate, create opportunities for collaboration and solve global challenges in the heart of Westmead,” said Mr Harrison.
Western Sydney University's Mr Pickering said, “iQ will build upon the University’s existing footprint in Westmead to integrate first-class health and medical research into policy and practice.
“The University’s presence within iQ will enable researchers, industry partners and clinicians to come together and address the nation’s most pressing health challenges.
“During these challenging times, iQ will also make important economic contributions to the region, generating $150 million for the regional economy and creating a significant number of jobs,” said Mr Pickering.
Minister Ayres said iQ will create important research, development and commercialisation opportunities to deliver significant health, social and economic benefits for Western Sydney.
“This new precinct will realise the NSW Government’s vision for the Westmead Health and Innovation District as a global centre where universities, industry and government will collaborate like never before to deliver health and medical research, education and training.
“Australia has been a world leader with its health management response to COVID-19, and research infrastructure like the Innovation Quarter will ensure Australia remains a competitive driver of cutting-edge research, technology and innovation,” said Mr Ayres.