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Why Toowoomba?

Why Toowoomba?

by Mat Cosgrove.

Some of you may be asking yourself, 'why Toowoomba?'. Let me fill you in.

Firstly, a bit of background about the city itself.

Toowoomba City

  • Toowoomba is Australia’s second largest inland City (behind Canberra) and has roughly 160,000 people living within the area
  • It is predicted to grow 40% in its population by 2031
  • There is $10 + billion development expenditure that is occuring and is proposed (potential to occur in next 12 to 24 months)
  • Has the lowest unemplotment rate in the country at 1.9 % (source: Suncorp Bank 2015)
  • The median house price sits around the $335,000 mark which is very affordable
  • The Toowoomba Regional Council is encouraging development with a town plan that is developer friendly
  • There are more than 3 million visitors to the region each year
  • The Toowoomba region is one of Australias leading agricultural sectors in both production and innovation
  • It is at the door of the resources sector and the largest major centre for the Surat Basin coal and oil/gas projects.
  • Brand new international Airport has been completed (Wellcamp or Brisbane west).

The Market

Toowoomba is experiencing unprecedented development. Mayor Paul Antonio said in October 2014: "As a major service centre to the surrounding rich agricultural area and the burgeoning
Surat Basin, Toowoomba is well placed to become a real powerhouse of the Queensland
economy". (source: www.hotspotting.com.au, 2015)

Overall Toowoomba is experencing more then 10 billion dollars in projects into the future, securing a good short term, mid term and long term outlook for the area.  

Toowoomba has seen very good growth in the past 18 months (roughly 16% up to May 2014) (source: REIQ, 2015) however that trend is set to continue with 4 billion dollars worth of projects underway now, 2.3 billion waiting commencement and another 4.1 billion proposed.  

Toowoomba is a unique market where the city has seen continual growth over 10 years.  We refer to these property markets as stayers

Nicely summed up, Toowoomba presents the following opportunity:

Affordable House Prices + Multiple Industries + Infrastructure = Growth

Vacancies

Vacancies, according to www.sqmresearch.com.au, has been below 3% for the past four years and is currently 3.0% in the Toowoomba postcode (4350).


The Projects


Some of the key projects in the area are the following (you can google each of these for further information):

Project

Amount ($)

Jobs

Status

Toowoomba Range second crossing

1.1 to 1.7 Billion

3800 direct jobs for construction

To begin in late 2015 and predicted to be completed by end of 2017

Bulli Creek solar power farm 1 billion Has the power to supply power for 75,000 homes.   Approved by council in february 2015.  Work to begin in 2016

Grand Central/Garden Town Shopping centre re development

500 million

1500 jobs during construction, 1000 ongoing jobs after

Construction started in November 2014 and is due for completion in mid 2017

Bunnings 42 million 380 construction
150 operational
Approved by council in April 2015
Allied Mills redevelopment, Ruthven St & Chalk Drv TBA Old flour mill to be transformed into a  precinct of hotels,  shops, cafes and  apartments. Proposed.  Site purchased for 2.8 million in april 2015
Wilsonton Shopping centre 50 million existing buildings will be combined into 1 building with cinemas and a Kmart under construction
Toowoomba Convention centre 300 million TBA Proposed
Rosemount Downs  Retirement Village,  Glenvale 80 million 153 home retirement village, country club and sports facilities for over 55's Approved by TCC in August 2013
waterpark 56 million TBA.  A park that includes waterslides is proposed. Proposed for south toowoomba
Surat Basin inland Railway 1 billion 1000 construction jobs
45 operational
Approved. Toowoomba to Galdstone railway link approved in 2010. QLD state government passed enabling legislation for this to proceed in november 2012.

Inland Railway project

4 billion

Includes roughly 200km of greenfield track and 150km of upgraded track around Toowoomba and its surrounding areas.  Jobs are estimated around 300 to 400 during construction.

Construction to start late 2015 in priority areas

Toowoomba Range  rail infrastructure  upgrade 50 millionTwo new rail passing  loops to be built at  Harlaxton and Ballard Approved - aimed at servicing agriculture
InterLinkSQ, intermodal
terminal and industrial precinct
160 million A rail precinct with  grain storage and  loading facilities in the Toowoomba  Enterprise Hub. proposed

New Acland Coal project stage 3

1 billion

-        260 jobs during construction

-        435 jobs during operations

Begin sometime in late 2015 or early 2016

FKG  meat processing plant

80 million

-        TBA

Development application in council 2015.  Plans are to have approved and start construction in 2016.

Toowoomba Railway Parklands Priority Development Area

TBA –

TBA –

includes a mixture of commercial, industrial, retail and residential land uses and also incorporates a number of places of state and local heritage significance over a 50 Ha site right next to the Toowoomba city centre.

Witmack industry Park

80 Million

It is estimated once fully completed, companies occupying this land will employ up to 12,000 people. 

Completed.  Stages 3 and 4 have just been placed onto the market.  With stages 1 and 2 70% sold.

Brisbane West Airport (wellcamp)

300 million

Completed

Toowoomba City is an area within SEQ that will offer opportunities for near term, mid term and long term future for any investor.  With a good size population, multiple industries and infrastructure being implemented for the foreseeable future the city is a stayer and as this is the case Investigate Property aim to find the best properties on the market for all potential clients.

With the majority of development sites we are sourcing under $400k to purchase, and with the cost to build a unit generally under $150k, Toowoomba also offers an affordable opportunity for investors.

Mat Cosgrove is available to answer any questions you may have regarding the Toowoomba market. More on Mat and how to reach him can be found here.

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