As Queensland's fastest growing city, Ipswich is home to a broad range of industries that have flourished historically and are poised for substantial growth going forward.
The City of Ipswich is working towards a sustainable industrial biotechnology and bioproducts sector. Initiatives currently being researched include developing an Ipswich-based biodiesel plant, waste diversion infrastructure and potential eco-industrial precinct. These are the industries of the future and the state government has released the Queensland Biofutures 10-Year Roadmap (2016) and allocated significant funding towards these sectors. Ipswich is looking to position itself as a part of that future and already there are some Ipswich companies leading the way in development
The City of Ipswich is the industrial and logistics centre for an agricultural area half the size of Wales. Ipswich has long been a major processing centre for meat, poultry, fine foods, beverages, smallgoods and packaged food. The city plans to establish itself as a major production and distribution centre to both national and international food markets.
The City of Ipswich is recognised as one of Australia’s primary defence regions with significant Australian Defence Force representation, an extensive industry network, established skilled workforce and a demonstrated capacity for growth and innovation.
Ipswich is also home to Australia's largest military airbase RAAF Amberley. Initially planned in 1940 to house a general purpose squadron of around 300 officers and airmen, the base is projected to grow to over 7,000 personnel by 2020. It was a key strategic airbase for the United States in the Second World War and is currently home to Australia’s key air strike and transport capabilities. Australian Army units are now stationed adjacent to the airbase and it also houses defence contractors and key aerospace service specialists working in aircraft maintenance and development.
The City of Ipswich is the historical manufacturing centre in South East Queensland. Manufacturing is the city's largest employer, with 14.6% of the workforce employed in the sector. The Ipswich manufacturing sector generates $2,278m in exports for the city's economy and creates $1,368m annually in local consumption. Ipswich has a wealth of available industrial land suited to both light and heavy manufacturing, serviced and linked to established heavy transport infrastructure.
Ipswich has a worldclass university, quality public and private schools and a strong vocational education sector. The city's comparative advantage is a knowledge-intensive workforce focused on its key industries.
Ipswich is home to Queensland’s first railway line. It is still a logistics hub for product distribution across Australia and internationally due to its location and easy access to the Port of Brisbane and Brisbane Airport. Ipswich is the nexus between six of the state’s largest and busiest roads and boasts toll-free access to the Warrego and Cunningham highways. With well-established rail infrastructure, the city has planning underway to link Ipswich to the Melbourne-Brisbane inland rail network. Ipswich is the ideal location for companies concerned with transporting goods between Brisbane and either the southern capitals or the ports of Asia.
With almost double the state’s growth rate, Ipswich will need to accommodate more than 300,000 more people over the next 25 years. Construction of housing and associated infrastructure presents tremendous opportunity. The City of Ipswich has recorded an amazing 47% annual growth in the property and construction sectors since 2001. Housing construction has been a standout performer, with the master-planned Springfield development attracting $13.6bn in public and private investment, including a $1.2bn rail and transport infrastructure project. The current $150m redevelopment of the Ipswich CBD, including a new council administration building and library, will revitalise the heart of city, while $64m of private investment will fund the construction of new facilities at St Andrews Hospital in the Ipswich health precinct.