Victoria announces $2.7 billion construction program

Victoria announces $2.7 billion construction program

Victoria will embark on a large-scale construction program worth $2.7 billion to enable businesses and workers to bounce back from the COVID-19 economic crisis.

The investment will fund hundreds of projects across several sectors and result in thousands of jobs for Victorians, according to Premier Daniel Andrews.

None of these projects are anticipated to be major projects, but rather ones that can get off the ground in the next three to six months.

These include maintenance and upgrades of public housing, road maintenance, train stations and education facilities.

"It's very, very important that we underpin demand that we give to tradies and so many other across the economy that sense of absolute certainty and confidence that this work is here, and it is here right now," Andrews said.

"There's never been a better time for us to invest in these jobs."

The State's Working for Victoria program will be a key element of this investment and will attempt to connect those who have recently lost work with the small construction firms that require labourers to undertake these projects.

"This is about jobs and building infrastructure that we need: small projects, projects that can be delivered quickly that are not going to sit around being designed and planned for years," says Andrews.

"We're ready to go with this and it'll be great."

Of the $2.7 billion investment, $1.18 billion will be specifically targeted at education projects.

This will result in 1,600 new jobs and the creation of 21,000 student places at schools around the State.

The education arm of the investment will result in the biggest school building project Victoria has undertaken.

Ultimately, 10 new schools will be constructed in addition to 57 school upgrades and 250 relocatable buildings.

The announcement comes as Victoria reports 1,567 cases of COVID-19, including six new cases.

Two of those new cases are from the McDonald's cluster, while three are currently in hotel isolation.

As of this morning there are two new cases in Queensland and one in New South Wales bringing the total number of new cases nationally to 11.

There are 7,054 cases of COVID-19 in Australia, 99 total deaths and 6,395 recoveries.

Updated at 10:14am AEST on 18 May 2020.

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