Media Release

Newsroom Releases 2015 January Building the future of JCU Cairns

20/1/2015
Building the future of JCU Cairns
James Cook University plans to expand its Cairns campus, revealing an exciting proposal for the construction of accommodation for hundreds of students.

Building the future of JCU Cairns

(Preliminary concept drawing)

James Cook University plans to expand its Cairns campus, revealing an exciting proposal for the construction of accommodation for hundreds of students

JCU will today (October 9th) sign an exclusive dealing deed to develop the project with Hua Yuan (Australia) Holding Pty. Ltd, which will build, own and operate the accommodation.

It’s envisaged that initially, accommodation will be built for 300 students, with work expected to be completed before first semester, 2016.

The multi-storey buildings will offer single room accommodation and ensuite bathrooms, and will be fully catered.

Preliminary concept drawings of the project are attached.

There are plans to expand the accommodation to 1000 beds over the longer term.

JCU Vice Chancellor, Professor Sandra Harding says the accommodation will change the profile of the Cairns campus, making it an even more attractive destination for domestic and international students to learn and live.

“This is a game-changer for JCU in Cairns. The Smithfield campus is in a growth phase and this accommodation will provide a tremendous boost for JCU’s expansion in Cairns.”

(Preliminary concept drawing)

The Director of Hua Yuan (Australia), Dr Benny Wu said there is no better investment then investing in the education and well-being of the next generation.

“Cairns has provided me with the best there is, such as my purchases of Double Island resort, Whitfield House and Acacia Court Hotel, and it’s my opportunity to return the favour to Cairns and its people,” Dr Wu said.

JCU DVC Global Strategy & Engagement and Head of the Cairns Campus, Professor Robyn McGuiggan said the accommodation would be particularly attractive to students from countries such as the United States and China.

“It’s normal for students from those countries to live on campus, and they’ll be able to do that at our Cairns campus,” she said.

Professor McGuiggan added that with a shortage of rental housing in Cairns, the additional accommodation would help protect students from rising rental costs.

Dr Wu said the project would deliver a number of “firsts” for Cairns.

“The buildings will be extremely eco-friendly in their design, and will feature solar power and a recycling program for waste.”

The developer will also make use of the latest, leading edge design to construct the buildings from modular units.

Dr Wu said it would also be a first for Cairns in the construction of a project of this scope within the timeframe given.

“Our timeline is to complete stage one of the project - 300 student accommodation units - by late 2015,” Dr Wu said.

For more information contact:

Richard Davis, Head of Media & Communications JCU

(07) 4781 4822 / 0413 451 475

richard.davis@jcu.edu.au