Main construction works have commenced on Edith Cowan University's newest campus – and the first comprehensive university to be situated within the Perth CBD – with a sod turning ceremony held at the $853 million ECU City site today.
ECU City will bring together Creative Industries, Business and Law, and emerging technologies. The university is set to invigorate the Perth City Link precinct and the Perth CBD by introducing a community of more than 10,000 staff and students to integrate with industry, and stimulate economic activity and patronage for surrounding businesses.
Jointly funded by the Australian Government, the Western Australian Government and ECU as part of the $1.5 billion Perth City Deal, the state-of-the-art campus will see thousands of local jobs created during construction and beyond. It will deliver $7.5 billion of economic impact in the long term.
Up to 5000 jobs are expected to be created during construction, fuelling local employment and supporting nearby businesses. During the peak of the building phase up to 800 construction and support staff are anticipated to be on site, bringing hundreds more people into the CBD each day.
The project will also create new opportunities for apprentices and Aboriginal businesses and workers, with head contractor Multiplex committing to targets that will deliver more jobs for local communities. It is anticipated that business and employment targets will result in at least 3 per cent of subcontracts being awarded to registered Aboriginal businesses, and a minimum of 2.1 per cent of the workforce to be Aboriginal people. Apprenticeships will also make up at least 11.5 per cent of the site's workforce, driving a significant skills boost in the construction sector.
Due for completion in late 2025 and opening to students in the first semester of 2026, the 60,000 square-metre ECU City campus will feature a dynamic digital media façade, activated streetscapes and laneways and an immersive entrance that envelopes the Perth Busport.
The multi-disciplinary campus will be home to ECU's renowned Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts (WAAPA), School of Business and Law, School of Arts and Humanities with the WA Screen Academy and Broadcasting, emerging technology programs from the School of Science and Kurongkurl Katitjin – the university's Centre for Indigenous Australian Education and Research.
ECU City will feature next-generation learning, engagement and performance spaces, including:
- Six state-of-the-art WAAPA public performance venues, as home to more than 300 public performances every year
- Dynamic digital media façade and immersive entrance that envelopes the public plaza
- Digital smart labs and industry engagement hub
- Radio, television and film production studios
- Arts and design studios and workshops
- Public gallery and event spaces
- Technology enhanced learning commons and student support facilities
The landmark ECU City project is a collaborative partnership with the Australian Government committing $294 million, the Western Australian Government $199 million and ECU $360 million.
More information is available at www.citycampus.ecu.edu.au
Comments attributable to WA Premier Mark McGowan:
"ECU City will transform the face of the Perth city, drawing thousands of students and staff to the city centre every day to create a thriving, vibrant CBD.
"It will be a game-changer for businesses in the city, driving economic activity and creating thousands of local jobs.
"The project will also create new jobs and opportunities for local Aboriginal businesses and workers throughout the construction phase, as well as supporting apprenticeships and traineeships.
"Once open, the campus will attract the best and brightest to our State, while providing industry-ready graduates that will fuel the pipeline of a highly skilled local workforce."
Comments attributable to Federal Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Local Government Minister Catherine King:
"The Australian Government is continuing to invest in city-defining projects, such as the ECU City campus. We were pleased to be able to confirm the additional funding required to secure project delivery as part of the last Federal Budget.
"This university will not only offer incredible, future-focused opportunities to students, but it will change the fabric of Perth as a city – creating a vibrant nexus to its cultural and business precincts, where people, the arts, technology, and industry will converge and collaborate.
"With the project now entering the main works construction phase, ECU City will create a powerhouse city precinct, while unlocking opportunities for innovation and collaboration between industry, research and education.
"With construction now underway, this project will generate thousands of local jobs and a boost to small businesses in the Perth CBD."
Comments attributable to WA Planning Minister Rita Saffioti:
"The breaking of ground is an exciting milestone for the ECU City project and the transformation of Perth.
"Situated at the doorstep of one of the busiest transport hubs in Perth, students, staff and the community will benefit from a transport network that allows unrivalled ease of access, straight to the entrance of the campus and connected with all parts of our city.
"The project is on track and has kept a phenomenal pace as a result of the collaboration between all levels of Government, multiple agencies and ECU."
Comments attributable to Federal Member for Perth Hon Patrick Gorman:
"ECU City heralds a new era in higher education in Western Australia. Students who come to ECU City will be at the doorstep of industry and business, studying alongside future employers while they learn, train and work.
"The campus will bring enormous benefits to the community and surrounding businesses by boosting population, activation and ultimately contributing to the ongoing revitalisation of Perth."
Comments attributable to State Member for Perth Hon John Carey:
"University towns around the world are exciting destinations for both locals and international tourists.
"Bringing 10,000 students and staff will provide a major boost to small business and breathe more life and vibrancy – and this is exactly what our City needs."
Comments attributable to ECU Vice-Chancellor, Professor Steve Chapman CBE:
"This is an exciting milestone for the ECU City campus, less than three years since we first announced this ambitious and transformational project.
"ECU City will be a world-class and immersive campus that enables inquiring and creative minds to flourish.
"The campus will be the launchpad for the future creators, innovators and problem solvers of tomorrow, while strengthening our university's, and Western Australia's, position as a leader in higher education.
"ECU City will provide an anchor for future-focused learning, new discoveries and creative expression, while connecting our university with the community and industry in a new way."
Premier's office - 6552 5000
WA Planning Minister's office - 6552 5500