From the Mayor

Welcome to the April edition of Your News, the City of Launceston's monthly newsletter.

It's been a busy few weeks for our city with an array of fantastic events including the Bason-ish Concert, Ten Days on the Island and Harmony Day proving a great success, and I commend everyone involved.

I was also incredibly honoured to present Freedom of Entry to our Australian Air Force and Navy cadets on behalf of the City of Launceston on March 21. The parade through the city that followed the official ceremony was truly a sight to behold.

This month we celebrate the return of the Supercars to Symmons Plains and three must-see AFL and A-League games at UTAS Stadium - and there's plenty to keep the kids entertained throughout the school holidays such as the always popular Brixhibition, the Ravenswood Skate Park Competition, and Basketball Tasmania's Jackjumpers Challenge & Family Day at Riverbend Park.

See the What's On section of this newsletter for our full April events calendar.

On behalf of myself and the City of Launceston, I wish you and your loved ones a safe and happy Easter as we reflect on the past 12 months, the challenges we've overcome, and the renewed opportunities ahead.

- Mayor Albert van Zetten

Major projects update

CEO Michael Stretton

I'm pleased to report the City of Launceston approved 153 Development Applications between January 1 and March 25 this year, up from 130 in the same period last year.

The estimated value of the approved Development Applications is $64.6 million - a significant increase on last year's corresponding figure of approximately $23 million.

This is very good news for our city and region.

Importantly, the Council recently approved the final three major infrastructure Development Applications for the UTAS Northern Transformation Project. 

These covered the redevelopment of the Circle Car Park to include a new recreational area and community garden with 240 new trees, a four-storey building to accommodate 144 students on part of the old bike track, and the refurbishment of and alterations to the existing Stone Building which currently houses the Creative Arts & Media School. 

Work is also progressing well on major Council projects currently underway, including:

  • Stage 2 of the $1.9 million Churchill Park redevelopment to include a new multi-purpose sports field, two full-sized soccer fields and a full-size cricket pitch and playing field;
  • the $1.7 million upgrade of the Launceston Road Safety Centre, with earthworks recently completed and repairs to the internal retaining wall now underway; 
  • the ten-week Invermay Road Rehabilitation Project which is nearing completion with final stage asphalt resealing works to be carried out over the next fortnight.
It's great to see the increase in building activity across the municipality, and we look forward to this ramping up in the coming weeks and months.

Quick links: 

2021 Fuel Reduction Burns program 

The City of Launceston's annual fuel reduction burn program is currently underway and is expected to be completed in May.

Fuel reduction burns are an essential part of a range of vegetation management strategies the Council employs to minimise bushfire risk.

The aim of the program is to reduce existing fire hazards, protect property and other assets, and assist in the regeneration of degraded bushland.

Nine fuel reduction burns are being undertaken when weather conditions are favourable at the below locations: 

  • Woods Reserve (West Launceston)
  • Havelock Street Reserve (Summerhill)
  • Youngtown Regional Park
  • Cataract Gorge Reserve
  • Carr Villa Flora Reserve Memorial park
  • Granville Street Reserve
  • Russell Plains (Launceston Waste Centre)
  • Russell Plains Woods Reserve

Comprehensive operational plans have been prepared for each burn, including smoke and dispersion modelling and risk assessments. For more information including confirmed dates, detailed maps and updates, click here


Freedom of Entry presented to cadets

The city streets were awash with pageantry on Sunday, March 21, when the City of Launceston presented Freedom of Entry to the Australian Air Force and Navy cadets.

Following the Princes Square ceremony, more than 100 cadets from the Australian Air Force Cadets No.5 Wing 508 Squadron, the Australian Navy Cadets TS Tamar, and the Australian Army Cadets 52 ACU Launceston and 67 ACU Youngtown marched through the city past Town Hall to Paterson Barracks.

City of Launceston Mayor Albert van Zetten described it as an unforgettable experience. 

 "The majority of us would never have seen a Freedom of Entry parade and conferral ceremony," he said.

 "It was visually spectacular and from speaking with those who took part, our defence force cadets were very excited to be involved in what is a tradition steeped in history.

"It was particularly poignant because this year marks the 100th anniversary of the Royal Australian Air Force and the 80th anniversary of the Air Force cadets," he said. 


New high-tech orienteering courses 

Supported by the City of Launceston, the Esk Valley Orienteering Club has developed a series of six new orienteering courses through Launceston's parks and reserves — with a technological twist.

The Club's Permanent Orienteering Course Project comprises a package of online maps and physical QR code-based trail markers, designed to allow anyone to enjoy orienteering.

The new courses cover areas like Riverbend Park, Heritage Forest, Punchbowl, and Royal Park, with course maps ranging from 1.4 km to 4km. 

Esk Valley Orienteering Club projects coordinator John Brock said orienteering was a great workout for both the body and mind.

"The Permanent Course Orienteering Project is aimed at opening orienteering up in Launceston to a broader audience. We we hope it will appeal to people of all ages, even if they've never tried orienteering before," he said.

City of Launceston Mayor Albert van Zetten said it was a fantastic initiative.

"It's great to see the club developing new ways to enjoy Launceston's parks and reserves," he said.


Launceston welcomes newest citizens 

City of Launceston Mayor Albert van Zetten officially welcomed 47 new Australian citizens to the community at a special ceremony at the Albert Hall on Tuesday. 

Our newest citizens come from many different countries including the Sudan, the United Kingdom, France, Myanmar, India, Malaysia, Afghanistan, Nigeria, Bhutan, Nepal, Sierra Leone, Ukraine, China, Vietnam, Bulgaria, New Zealand, Mexico, Ireland, the Russian Federation and Pakistan.

“We are privileged to live in a city that has such a rich cultural fabric and our new citizens will add to the diversity of our community," Mayor van Zetten said.

"It gives me great pleasure to be able to officially welcome all of them as new citizens."

Supercars return to Symmons Plains 

The hotly anticipated return of the Supercars to Symmons Plains has been delayed a week due to the Covid-19 outbreak in Brisbane. The two-day event and will now be held on April 17-18 and tickets purchased prior to the change of date remain valid. 

Round 3 of the Repco Supercars Championship promises to produce electrifying action as the drivers and teams vie for early Championship points.

Bring the whole crew - kids 12 and under go trackside free with a paying adult.


A League & AFL blockbusters this month

Launceston sports fans are in for a treat this month with two A League matches and the Anzac Day AFL blockbuster to be played at University of Tasmania Stadium.

Western United FC will play A League ladder-leader Central Coast Mariners on Saturday, April 17, with kick-off set for 5.05pm.

Five days later, United will host Wellington Phoenix at the Stadium at 7.05pm in what will be the second of four games locked in for Launceston over the next two seasons in a deal announced by Premier Peter Gutwein last month.

Then on Sunday, April 25, Hawthorn will make its long-awaited return to UTAS Stadium when it takes on Adelaide, with the match to start at 12.30pm.

City of Launceston Mayor Albert van Zetten said it was a coup for Tasmanian fans to have such a wealth of live sport back on the calendar after missing out for more than a year due to the COVID restrictions.

"Just having Hawthorn back in town will give everyone such a tremendous boost, but to then have two A League games as well - all in the space of just eight days - is just the icing on the cake," Mayor van Zetten said.

"But it's also very important that the entire community gets behind these games. After such a long lay-off from having live, top-level sport in our city, it's absolutely vital that we support these games - all of them - and show the AFL and the A League that we want more of these games in Launceston."

A maximum crowd figure of 9740 will be permitted at the stadium for the A League matches and AFL clash on Anzac Day.


April @ QVMAG: new exhibitions + school holiday fun

There's something for everyone at QVMAG this month!

Check out the links below for details: 

School Holiday Program

10 Objects, 10 Stories

Nest Live

For Country, for Nation 

Launceston Aquatic family discount

Take the whole family to the City of Launceston Leisure & Aquatic Centre for the special price of just $16 these school holidays - we've got a huge range of new inflatables for the kids to enjoy!

Our hugely popular Adult Learn to Swim program is on again from May 3 to June 13: don't miss out - registrations open April 19.


Good gardening: grow your own garlic

 Green thumb tips from City of Launceston horticulturalist extraordinaire Matt Jordan 

Growing garlic straight from the clove in our cool Tasmanian climate is really easy and requires little effort - the key to a getting a good harvest is all in the soil preparation.

Make sure your soil is free draining and well-worked with good organics -  plant in pots or the garden bed.  Mound a row of soil in a sunny position, and push cloves in tip up to the clove's depth at spacings of 100mm. 

As with all winter crops, planting in April is ideal to take advantage of the warmth still present in soils which helps to kickstart the growing process.

Growing garlic from the clove takes approximately six months so you'll be enjoying your own crop by summer.

Quick links


Council meetings


Current Development Applications

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The City of Launceston makes every effort to ensure the content of this newsletter is accurate but makes no warranty as to its accuracy and does not assume legal liability for its content. The inclusion of a person, organisation, activity, event, or website link does not imply endorsement by the Council.