• “For me, any debate about whether council should own these CBD properties or not is immaterial. The simple reality is that it does, and we needed to work out the best thing to do.”

    – Interim administrator Greg Chemello, 2019


  • Timeline item 1 - complete


    • Council forms commercial company Ipswich City Properties (ICP) to buy Ipswich City Square from owner Memo Corp to invest in and activate the city’s CBD.
    • ICP purchases Ipswich City Square from Memo Corp with $45 million State Government loan
  • Timeline item 2 - complete


    • ICP engages Leighton Group to develop Icon Tower 1, on the corner of Bell and Brisbane streets.
  • Timeline item 3 - complete


    • Icon Tower 1 construction begins.
  • Timeline item 4 - complete


    • ICP buys Murphy’s Hotel (former Commonwealth Hotel). Hotel found to be subsiding due to works by Kern Corporation in mid-1980s due to Ipswich Mall development. Decision made to close hotel pending further works.
  • Timeline item 5 - complete


    • ICP announces plan to relocate Ipswich Central Library and Council administration building to new, purpose-built facilities, and to build a large civic plaza there.
    • Council engages with community to understand what the community would like to see. Reports developed based on that engagement and submitted to ICP.
  • Timeline item 6 - complete


    • epc.Pacific engaged as developer of new council administration building. ICP enters into deed of agreement for lease of administration building.
    • June: Ipswich City Square demolition commences
    • July: Preservation work to deconstruct and store Murphy’s Pub (Commonwealth Hotel) begins.
  • Timeline item 7 - complete


    • February: Decision to cancel development contract with epc Pacific. Council pays $7 million compensation. ICP buys Ipswich City Plaza as part of redevelopment strategy.
    • July: ICP commissions Deloitte to assess the economic and social impact of the redevelopment process
    • August: State Government dissolves Ipswich City Council, appoints interim administrator, Greg Chemello. Mr Chemello announces plan to review operations of council companies and to restart CBD development.
    • October: Council, through interim administrator, resolves to start process of integrating ICP assets into council and winding up ICP.
    • November: JMAC engaged to carry out works in Nicholas Street and Union Place. One-way construction begins on Nicholas Street.
  • Timeline item 8 - complete


    • March: McGrathNichol report published, setting out costs associated with ICP redevelopments, including costs of winding down ICP.
    • September: Hutchinsons Builders awarded contract to build new main library, administration building and Tulmur Place. KPMG engaged to independently review and provide recommendations on the business case for precinct retail spaces. Community engagement undertaken to identify aspects of First Nations culture to be reflected in the CBD public art plan. Black Drum report provided for council consideration.
    • October: Council commits to help CBD traders through redevelopment by providing a monetary contribution to their marketing budgets
  • Timeline item 9 - complete


    • February: Council engages CoDesign studio to develop report analysing and confirming previous assessments of precinct areas.
    • June: Roberts Day produces an events activation plan.
    • September: car park strategy for precinct submitted for Ipswich Central Redevelopment Committee consideration.
    • October: Council engages the community on how they would like to see Nicholas Street Precinct activated. Reports developed based on that engagement to inform council’s Community Safety Strategy and Nicholas Street Events and Activation Plan.
    • November: Nicholas Street officially opened.
    • December: Ipswich Central Library opened.
  • Timeline item 10 - complete


    • June: 1 Nicholas Street, council administration building and customer service centre, and Australia’s first dedicated stand alone children’s library, open. Commonwealth Hotel restoration works reach practical completion. Ipswich Central Redevelopment Committee endorses recommendation to extend Commonwealth Hotel to increase its footprint to make a contemporary inner-city hotel offering.
  • Timeline item 11 - complete


    • Children’s library recognised for innovation at the Local Government Managers Australia Queensland Excellence Awards, and at the National Federation Awards with the Community Service Delivery Award.
    • July: Nicholas Street Precinct wins Best Tourism and Leisure Facilities over $10 million at the Master Builders Queensland 2022 Brisbane Housing and Construction Awards.
    • October: the precinct wins the 2022 Landscape Architecture Award for Landscape Planning at the Queensland Australian Institute of Landscape Architects Awards.
    • Council commits $41.4 million in the 2022-2023 Budget for the next stage of the Nicholas Street Precinct redevelopment, focussed on delivery of the leisure, entertainment, food and beverage areas.
  • Timeline item 12 - active


    • January: Tulmur Walk opens, linking the precinct to the Ipswich Train Station in Bell Street.
    • April: The city’s main ANZAC Day march returns to the city heart, with Tulmur Place hosting the ceremony for the first time.
    • June: 2023-24 Budget commits $5.5 million for ongoing restoration of Commonwealth Hotel, $3.8 million for expansion of Tulmur Walk, $1.2 million for the dining hub and $39.4 million for the Venue entertainment and Hoyts Cinema complex.
    • July: Council resolution lists Bell Street as a Locally Significant Project, paving the way to work with the State Government on its revitalisation
    • August: Demolition works finished at Commonwealth Hotel, construction begins.