Labor’s Plan for Northern Tasmania

Labor’s vision is to confirm Launceston as one of the world’s great regional cities, with a reputation for innovation, resourcefulness and entrepreneurship.

We want to build on Northern Tasmania’s reputation as the engine room of the Tasmanian economy through investment in advanced manufacturing, technology and high value products.

We want Launceston to drive economic activity in surrounding regions.

We want to ensure people are healthy and have access to secure, stable and full time employment.

We will do this by maximising the opportunities of the City Deal and transforming Launceston into the smartest city in Australia.

A Majority Labor Government will commit $115 million in new investment to realise our vision.

Labor’s Plan for Health

Fixing Tasmania’s health crisis and our broken health system will be the number one priority of a Majority Labor Government.

When people are happy and healthy, they are more productive members of society.

Labor recognises the impact of the Liberal’s cuts to the health system and the impact this has had on the health of Northern Tasmanians.

Labor’s $560 million Better Health Plan will take the pressure off our emergency departments by employing more doctors, more nurses, more allied health professionals and more paramedics.

A Majority Labor Government will produce a new masterplan for the Launceston General Hospitaland surrounding area to create a Launceston Health Precinct.

This will include:

  • better public car parking,
  • planning for future hospital expansion,
  • greater integration with public transport and
  • integration with primary care and clinics.

As a key part of this vision, Labor will call for expressions of interest to build a co-located private hospital adjacent to the Launceston General Hospital.

A new private hospital will improve the ability to recruit and retain quality staff and improve services for both public and private patients.

Labor will allocate $60 million from our Future Hospitals Fund for priority projects identified through the master plan process.

Priority will be given to projects that increase the capacity, activity and work and patient environment of the LGH.


Labor will fund an additional 24/7 ambulance crew and truck in Launceston to address response times, which have blown out under the Liberal Government.

Mother and Baby Unit

Labor will establish a dedicated public Mother and Baby Unit for Launceston. It is unacceptable that there is currently only one public bed in the state and that mothers needing this important service have to travel to Hobart.

Child and Family Centres

Labor has made a commitment to build six new Child and Family Centres around the state.

These Centres have been proven to make a real difference in the lives of children and their parents.

Labor will identify a suitable site in Launceston’s northern suburbs for a new Child and Family Centre.

Labor’s Plan for Affordable Housing

Labor’s $106 million Housing Action Plan will help Tasmanians to get into the rental market, provide support to purchase a home and build 900 more public housing homes.

While the benefits of this package will be felt state-wide, targeted initiatives for the North include:

  • Building new emergency short term accommodation for at risk young people in Northern Tasmania, based on Colony 47’s successful Mara House model, including 24/7 support.
  • Three new multi-residential developments, including one in the North, based on the principles of Hopkins Street in Moonah. The Hopkins Street complex provides 30 units for Tasmanians in need, including six two-bedroom units with wheelchair access.
  • 75 new homes to meet the demand on the waiting list, particularly in regional areas.

Creating a Global City

Under the Liberals, Northern Tasmania has lagged behind other parts of the State and the region’s potential has remained largely untapped.

A Labor government will invest in Northern Tasmania’s people and work in partnership with local government, industry and business and the broader community to make Launceston a global city and a hub for development in surrounding regions.

Labor’s plan will:

  • Generate new business activity and jobs

  • Create new training and employment opportunities in advanced manufacturing and technology

  • Build on northern Tasmania’s unique lifestyle and sense of community

  • Revitalise the region’s natural environment, especially the Tamar River

  • Improve northern Tasmania’s vital infrastructure and services.

The Launceston City Deal is a game changer but its potential is not being fully realised or coordinated.

The relocation of the University, the revitalisation of the Tamar River, modern traffic management, public spaces and a vibrant culture must all be brought together cohesively and strategically.

Achieving this vision will require coordination and buy-in from the Launceston community, all levels of government and business groups.

Labor will use the high level of expertise that already exists within the Office of the Coordinator General to drive the transformation.

Labor has been upfront that we think the Office of the Coordinator General can be more efficient and more effective.

We have always said that we will not remove resources from the north, but we will ensure those resources are used strategically to drive our economic agenda.

We will retain the existing office structure, but we will use this opportunity to better integrate the Office with a new Department of Economic Growth and Regional Development and set clear KPIs, reporting requirements and transparency measures.

Under Labor, the Office will involve greater outreach to the regions to drive economic development and job creation.

The Office will retain an investment attraction and trade facilitation role because creating a global city means being able to communicate with the world.

Labor will work constructively with stakeholders to ensure the Office is responsive to the needs of the business community.

Building A Smarter City

Labor will double the existing Smart Cities project by investing $3 million to ensure the benefits of this project are realised by the entire greater Launceston area.

The massive opportunities of the Smart Cities project are largely untapped.

Launceston already has the fastest internet in Australia and the city is the perfect size to trial innovations such as smart traffic management, lighting, waste management and parking.

Labor sees the opportunity to make Launceston the smartest city in Australia by working with technology companies to use the city as the test bed for new applications, sensors and monitoring.

Opportunities include:

  • Traffic signals that adapt in real time to minimise congestion
  • Smart lighting that saves money and improves safety by switching on as pedestrians approach

Labor will offer dollar for dollar investment in the upfront costs of smart city infrastructure in order to leverage a total of up to $9 million in Smart City initiatives.

NBN rollout

Labor will support initiatives across all levels of Government and  the private sector to complete the NBN fibre-connection rollout to deliver the NBN as originally promised to Northern Tasmania.

Better Infrastructure & Transport

Labor recognises the need for continuing investment in Northern Tasmania’s roads and other transport infrastructure to support further economic development in the region.

Labor will improve public transport services in Launceston, particularly between the northern suburbs and the CBD, and will work with the Launceston City Council to ease traffic congestion in Kings Meadows, Invermay and other areas.

The contrast between the two major parties on road infrastructure priorities in northern Tasmania could not be clearer.

While the Liberals have made vague, uncosted and unfunded commitments to a $600 million bridge across the Tamar north of Riverside, Labor will focus on more immediate projects that ease traffic congestion and improve road safety during our first term

Labor will make an investment of $42.5 over four years to improve Launceston’s road infrastructure and transport services.

New Charles Street Bridge and Inveresk Precinct Traffic Improvements

With recent developments and exciting new projects in the pipeline, the Inveresk Precinct and Charles Street Bridge are experiencing increasing traffic pressure.

The Charles Street Bridge is coming towards the end of its lifecycle and a replacement bridge will need to be elevated to better withstand flood events and integrate with Launceston’s flood levy system as well as allow river users easier passage at all timesLabor will commit $40 million over four years to plan, design and build a new Charles Street Bridge and redevelop the Goderich Street, Lindsay Street intersection, as well as providing better access to the North Bank area from Gleadow Street.

A replacement bridge would be built alongside the existing bridge to minimise traffic disruption.

The project will create more traffic lanes and separate through-traffic from traffic accessing local amenity and businesses, significantly easing congestion and improving traffic flow.

A Regional Transport Strategy for Launceston’s Future

Labor will provide $1 million towards a Launceston Regional Transport Strategy in partnership with Local Government to reimagine traffic flow in the greater Launceston area.

This work will take place over 12 months and will form the basis for future traffic planning in the region, including future works on key road corridors, such as the West Tamar Highway.

It will also consider future proposals in Launceston for the development of electric and autonomous vehicles to provide a model concept for the nation in improved public transport options.

St Leonards Growth Area Road and Amenity Improvements

Labor recognises St Leonards is a growing suburb of Launceston and an important traffic corridor into the city. Station Road in particular is a key access for two schools and an aged care home.

Labor will commit $1.5 million to work with Council to develop a masterplan for St Leonards and commence work on traffic and amenity improvements.

New High Frequency Bus Services for Launceston’s Northern Suburbs

Under the Liberals residents of Launceston’s Northern Suburbs have been neglected with poor public transport options to Launceston’s CBD.

Under Labor’s All Aboard Passenger Transport strategy, Labor will review the coverage of bus services to Launceston’s Northern Suburbs and fund more buses to run more frequent services.

Under Labor more buses will connect more streets and run more often from the Northern Suburbs to the CBD and the Launceston Health Precinct.

This will help to bridge the social isolation divide and create a more connected city, where people can access the services they need, when they need them.

Labor will also work with bus service providers to roll-out integrated ticketing and real-time bus tracking.

Creating Jobs Through Advanced Manufacturing & Training

n the north, 499 apprenticeships have gone under Will Hodgman.

Under the Liberals Tasmania has lost over 1600 full time jobs since last June.

Will Hodgman’s answer has been to advertise in Sydney for people to move here and make it even harder for Tasmanians to find work.

Labor’s answer is to rebuild TAFE and work with industry to create more full time jobs.

Labor will commit $250,000 to develop a strategy to make Launceston a Centre for Advanced Manufacturing and Training.

The strategy will be developed in partnership with Labor’s new Minerals, Energy and Advanced Manufacturing Industry Advisory Council.

Launceston and northern Tasmania are ideally placed to create new, advanced technology jobs and to become a centre of excellence for high-end industry and advanced manufacturing.

Labor will partner with industry to stimulate the revitalisation of advanced manufacturing in Launceston.

We will aim to create an exciting, new direction for Launceston’s existing industry base and capture new technology-based business opportunities, by leveraging off initiatives such as Federal Labor’s $1 billion Australian Manufacturing Future Fund.

Labor also recognises the importance of new technology-based training in ensuring that Tasmanians of all ages have access to new and emerging employment opportunities.

Continuing investment in new technology and equipment and in training for vocational educators is vital in enabling northern Tasmania to keep pace with technological change in industry and trades, and in creating better jobs.

Under the Liberals, vocational education and training has stagnated, with under-investment in new technology and equipment and in staff training.

Labor’s vision is for Launceston to be recognised as an education and training centre of excellence, with a new focus on vocational education and training – with TAFE at its heart.

Enhancing Livability

Northern Tasmania is already a vibrant place to live and work.

We want to continue to build on this reputation and attract people, not only to visit, but to live in Launceston and surrounding regions.

Activating the city’s hidden spaces

Labor will provide $50,000 to work with the Launceston City Council, the Launceston Chamber of Commerce and local businesses to develop a strategy to activate spaces above shopfronts for residential development.

Labor is committed to pursuing innovative solutions to increase supply of housing.

The world’s great cities have activated the space above CBD shops and restaurants for residential development.

This approach is not without its planning challenges, but Labor believes that by working cooperatively with a range of stakeholders we have an opportunity to bring new vibrancy to the centre of Launceston.

Small events grant program

Labor recognises northern Tasmania’s vibrant lifestyle and sense of community and will support local government and community groups to foster community–based arts and cultural activities.

Labor recognises the role that festivals and community events can play in stimulating cultural activity, generating new jobs and generating new community pride.

Launceston’s Festivale is just one example of a successful festival driven by the community with help from State and Local Government.

Labor believes there are unexplored opportunities for Launceston to develop new festivals, strengthen existing events and to enhance its reputation as a centre of culture and the arts.

Labor will establish a $1 million New and Existing Small Events Grant Program

This will help build new events into the calendar to benefit regional and remote communities.

The fund will offer grants of up to $20,000 per event, with priority given to new festivals and events with co-investment and support from Local Government.

Launceston Tennis Community and Events Centre

Labor will provide $2 million to support the development of new tennis, community and events facilities at the existing Launceston Regional Tennis Centre in the Elphin Sports Precinct.

Junction Arts

Junction Arts Festival has carved out a reputation as one of the premiere regional arts festivals in Australia.

Labor will help the festival continue to grow from strength to strength with a funding boost of $300,000 over three years.

Bringing The Tourism Boom To The North

Labor wants to ensure that the tourism boom is felt in all parts of Tasmania, not just in the South.

Labor is committed to investing in regional tourism projects that will drive visitation, investment and jobs.

A Majority Labor Government has committed to fully fund projects identified in the Tourism Industry Council Tasmania’s  ‘Future Proofing Our Icons’ report including an investment of $1.5 million for the North-East & St Helens Mountain Bike Trail Network.

Polishing the jewel in Launceston’s crown

The Gorge is Launceston’s enduring icon and Northern Tasmania’s most visited attraction, with around 200,000 interstate and international visitors.

In order to maintain this status, Labor will commit $2 million to achieve the vison of the 2015 “Reimaging the Gorge” report produced by the Launceston City Council.

This investment will activate the Gorge at night, with a dynamic light, sound and thematic experience in First Basin.


Beauty Point Foreshore Beautification Project

The Tamar River has huge potential as an iconic visitor destination for Northern Tasmania.

This potential remains unfulfilled partly due to the lack of connectivity between the water and local communities and destinations.

The Tamar River Foreshore Beautification Project will beautify and open river-facing villages along the length of the Tamar River. The strategy will seek to engage visitors and locals further in the river, while stimulating private investment and commercial activity along the Tamar River.

Labor will provide $500,000 for the first stage of this project to activate the waterfront in Beauty Point.

Building Stronger & Safer Communities

Labor has a strong track record of keeping communities safe and we know how impotant it is for people to feel safe and secure in their homes.

Equally, we know how important it is to support services like RSLs and Neighbourhood Houses that strengthen the fabric of our community.



Labor has listened to communities who want actual police on the ground in their towns.

That will be delivered under Labor’s plan to recruit additional officers with a focus on rural and regional Tasmania.

Labor will take police officers off court security duties in the North and North West, putting them back on the beat in communities.

Labor will place 57 more police officers back on the beat in Tasmania – where they belong – with more police presence in regional towns and communities like Bridport, Scottsdale and George Town.

Every Tasmanian needs to feel safe in their home, safe in their workplace, safe to go about their business, safe to walk on the streets and know that their families are safe in every community.



Labor recognises the important work that the Returned Services League does in supporting our veterans and our communities.

That is why we are providing the Returned Services League with an additional $100,000 per year to support clubs likeBeaconsfield, Bicheno, Bridport, Deloraine, Exeter, Fingal-Mathinna, Flinders Island, George Town, Launceston, Lilydale, Northern Midlands, Ross, Scottsdale, Spring Bay, St Helens-St Marys and Westbury.


Neighbourhood Houses

Labor will ensure that Neighbourhood Houses can continue to empower their communities through an increase in recurrent funding to $45,000.

In addition to this, $2 million will be invested in capital upgrades to improve Neighbourhood House infrastructure and stimulate local jobs.

This will benefit Beaconsfield House, Deloraine House, Dorset Community House, Fingal Valley Neighbourhood House, George Town Neighbourhood House, Northern Suburbs Community Centre (Mowbray), Northern Suburbs Community Centre (Rocherlea), Ravenswood Neighbourhood House, St Helens Neighbourhood House, Tresca Community Centre (Exeter).