From the Mayor

Welcome to the March edition of Your News, the City of Launceston's electronic newsletter.

There's certainly a lot of good news to talk about this month, with the Council's endorsement of the $208m UTAS Stadium Future Direction Plan something for us all to be excited about.

The proposed fully upgraded stadium and associated indoor sport and entertainment facility is expected to inject an additional $62 million a year into our economy, based on attracting events not currently hosted at the stadium such as NBL and A League games, large-scale concerts and one-off sporting and cultural events. The proposed governance model would also save the Council and its ratepayers millions of dollars annually.

I've also been very pleased to support the roll-out of designated free 'Park & Ride' spots in some of our car parks to encourage more people to park their cars and cycle into the city. It's great timing with Bike Week running March 7 to 14 and incorporating events for every age and fitness level.

When it comes to events, it's incredible to see how far we've come in terms of the impact of Covid-19. From Ten Days on the Island and Relay for Life, to Harmony Day, the Basin Concert and many more, March boasts a full and exciting calendar of community events worth celebrating. 

Let's all remember to stay vigilant and do our part to minimise risk and keep ourselves and each other healthy and safe. 

I hope you enjoy our March newsletter, and I encourage you to send your feedback to

- Mayor Albert van Zetten

Major projects update

CEO Michael Stretton

The coming weeks and months will see a number of important projects realised across Launceston.

As you'll read in this edition of Your News, our $2.9m rehabilitation of Invermay Rd and $2m Golconda Rd Black Spot upgrade are currently underway and progressing well. 

We're also undertaking important improvements to several of our rural bridges with significant renewal work currently being done on the Patersonia and Upper Blessington Rd bridges.
Along with a number of other projects under the Council's targeted $40m Accelerated Capital Works program, I'm pleased we've been able to bring these upgrades to critical transport links across our municipality forward.

  • Footpath Resealing Program
  • Golconda Rd upgrade
  • Invermay Rd upgrade
  • Poplar Parade road rehabilitation
  • Quarantine Rd upgrade
  • Trevallyn roadworks
  • Upper Blessington Rd Bridge upgrade

In this edition: 


Brett Whiteley's Waves V located in QVMAG Collection Audit

The Queen Victoria Museum & Art Gallery is delighted to announce that curators have located Brett Whiteley's Waves V as part of the institution's Collection Audit.

The ink drawing by the renowned Australian artist was purchased by the gallery in 1976, and records show that it entered the QVMAG collection soon after. However there was no further record of the item after that, nor has it ever been displayed.

In 2018, staff undertook a preliminary search of the gallery's storage after being contacted by researchers inquiring about the artwork, but were unable to locate it.

The artwork was located earlier this week in a gallery storage drawer during audit procedures.

The Collection Audit is the first full audit of the QVMAG collection since the institution's inception in 1891. It was launched at the start of the 2019/20 financial year, with the aim of creating a database of QVMAG’s 1.5 million artworks and objects. The project has enabled the creation of new jobs in the arts and culture section for Launceston, with a dedicated team of curators, officers and volunteers meticulously documenting the collection.

City of Launceston Mayor Albert van Zetten said the Collection Audit had enabled in-depth analysis of QVMAG's extensive collections.

"By committing to the Collection Audit we have been able to preserve, analyse and register QVMAG's precious and extensive collection for the first time in the Museum's 130-year history," Mayor Van Zetten said.

"We are pleased to confirm Waves V by Brett Whiteley has always been safely looked after in the collection as a result of this project."

General Manager of Creative Arts & Cultural Services Tracy Puklowski said the audit was a significant moment in the collection's history.

"QVMAG has taken significant steps to maintain the integrity and quality of its entire collection, and will continue to do so into the future. We will be sharing the artwork with the community with a public display later this month."

PHOTO: QVMAG General Manager of Creative Arts & Cultural Services Tracy Puklowski with Waves V by Brett Whiteley.


Council endorses $208m UTAS Stadium plan

The City of Launceston has endorsed its $208 million UTAS Stadium Future Direction Plan which aims to create a sustainable model for a fit-for-purpose sporting stadium in Launceston.

"There is an exciting future ahead for not only the city, but for all potential users of the stadium if this plan can be realised," City of Launceston Mayor Albert van Zetten said.

"This future direction plan outlines a path forward which will encompass a multitude of uses, including research, education, high performance and commercial, as well as grass roots and elite sports."

The plan contains a number of proposals that would see the most significant expansion of Launceston's sporting infrastructure since the 1960s by increasing the stadium's seating capacity to 27,500, the construction of a high-performance sports centre, and the development of an adjoining 5000-seat, multi-use indoor sports facility capable of hosting national-level sporting competitions and events.

"Our initial economic impact studies show that a fully upgraded stadium and associated indoor sport and entertainment facility would inject an expected $62 million a year into our economy, in addition to the expected $60 to $70 million direct economic contribution to Launceston and the broader Northern region, which is based on attracting events that are not currently hosted at the stadium including NBL and A League games, large-scale concerts and one-off sporting and cultural events," Mayor van Zetten said.


FOGO hits 10,000th registration milestone

The City of Launceston has already hit a new FOGO milestone this year, with the 10,000th household registering for the kerbside garden and food organics collection service. 

Nearly 40 per cent of the municipality's 26,000 eligible households now have a FOGO bin, and the numbers continue to climb.

Launched in October 2017, the City of Launceston's FOGO kerbside collection service was the first of its kind in Tasmania. Initially limited to the suburban areas of the city, the service was expanded into areas including Windermere and Dilston last year and saw its first commercial registrations from organisations such as the Launceston General Hospital and The Grain restaurant at Peppers Silos Hotel.

Compost processed at the City of Launceston's dedicated organics processing facility at the Launceston Waste Centre is already being supplied to wholesalers and used in public gardens like City Park and Riverbend Park.

Keep you FOGO bin clean and sweet-smelling by freezing food waste and scraps ahead of collection day. 

Construction underway on new landfill cell

Construction work has begun on an $8.1m landfill cell at the Launceston Waste Centre. The project is expected to take approximately 12 months to complete.

The new cell will cover an area of 32,000 square meters and will involve the excavation of more than 48,000 cubic metres of earth to a depth of 6m. It will be lined with three layers of synthetic material: a geo-synthetic clay liner, a polyethylene membrane and a geotextile protection layer. These layers are designed to meet the highest environmental standards and to prevent leachate from contaminating ground and surface water.

The layers act together to create an impermeable barrier between the content of the landfill cell and the natural environment.


Work begins on major road improvements

Work has begun on two major road upgrade projects as part of the City of Launceston's $40m Accelerated Capital Works Program.

Expected to take three months to complete, the $2.9m upgrade of Invermay Rd, between Forster St and Vermont Rd, will see the resealing of a 2.1km section of Invermay Rd, localised kerb and channel repairs, new line marking and signage, and the replacement of traffic islands.

While two-way traffic will be maintained throughout the works, reduced speed limits and traffic management will be in place. A combination of day-time, night-time and weekend works are being undertaken to minimise disruption to residents and businesses, and on-street parking will be maintained wherever possible.

"Invermay Rd is showing its age and this project represents an opportunity to upgrade it to contemporary standards," City of Launceston Mayor van Zetten said.

A $2m Black Spot upgrade of Golconda Rd, north of Lilydale, is also underway and is expected to take four months to complete.

The project involves road widening, resealing and safety upgrades on a 3km section of Golconda Rd between Bacala Rd and Denison Gorge Rd. The work will be completed in stages to minimise traffic, however motorists are advised traffic will be reduced to one lane at times and short delays may occur.

QVMAG Royal Park roof upgrade underway

The City of Launceston has begun work on a $250,000 upgrade of the Queen Victoria Museum & Art Gallery's Royal Park site roof. 

With the existing roof nearing the end of its asset life, the project will involve the installation of a new roofing system designed to better handle stormwater.

The new roof system, which will be constructed over the western end of the building, has been designed in consultation with Heritage Tasmania, and is intended to blend sympathetically with the original architecture. The work is expected to take around four months to complete, and will involve the use of a crane.

Launceston Mayor Albert van Zetten said the project would ensure the Royal Park building remained fit for purpose into the future.

"The Royal Park building dates from 1891 and is one of Launceston's most stunning built assets," Mayor van Zetten said.

"We'll be working closely with our contractors to minimise any disruption so that people can continue to enjoy everything the Art Gallery has to offer throughout the duration of the works."

Download City of Launceston Minecraft map

Launceston landmarks like Kings Bridge, UTAS Stadium and the Town Clock have been recreated in popular video game Minecraft using 3D LiDAR scans from the City of Launceston's digital data assets.

The Council has used LiDAR - which stands for Light Detection and Ranging - to undertake scans of the city for several years. The scans are used by the Council to create 3D computer models of city projects and new development proposals.

Originally created as a data visualisation demonstration tool for students, the Council has now made the Minecraft map of Launceston available for download online

"What we have is a scale accurate Minecraft map of central Launceston which we hope gamers experiment with," City of Launceston Analytics Team Leader Jarred Ranson said. "There's a lot of scope for improvement if someone is interested in taking it on and developing it further, but the basics are all there and most of Launceston's landmarks are easily recognisable.

"If someone eventually does develop the map further, we'd love to see the end results."


Free parking to encourage city cycling

New Park & Bike designated free parking areas have been established at Heritage Forest, Hoblers Bridge and Riverside's Tailrace Park to allow people to park their vehicles and cycle into town. 

The initiative is the first stage of the Tamar Bike Users Group, On Your Bike Tours Launceston, and Reclink Northern Tasmania's 'A great cycling city' project, which received funding through the Great Regional City Challenge.

"This project is another fantastic way to highlight cycling opportunities in Launceston, and to encourage people to explore the city on a bike," Launceston Mayor Albert van Zetten said.

TBUG President Malcolm Reid said the Park & Bike locations offered convenient access to nearby walking and cycling trails.

"This project is about encouraging the community to park their cars and ride into town for work, shopping, family outings and or other social activities," Mr Reid said. "We want to see more people discovering how convenient cycling can be when it comes to travelling around Launceston."

PHOTO: Mayor Albert van Zetten, On Your Bike Tours Launceston project facilitator Alison Hugo, and TBUG president Malcolm Reid.


Boosted collaboration between top museums

Launceston's Queen Victoria Museum & Art Gallery and the Tasmanian Museum & Art Gallery in Hobart have signed a Memorandum of Understanding pledging to increase collaboration between the State’s two major cultural institutions.

Under the MoU, TMAG and QVMAG will work together on a range of projects including creating and preserving exceptional digital content for Tasmanian cultural assets, liaising and sharing information on collections and governance matters, and working on collaborative research projects.

TMAG and QVMAG are currently collaborating with the University of Tasmania, Libraries Tasmania and the City of Launceston on the innovative Digital Cultural Experience project to further facilitate public access to Tasmania’s cultural collections and rich history.

The MoU will see the two institutions work together to develop exhibitions and related programming at their respective sites in Hobart and Launceston, and increase opportunities for exchanges and information sharing between staff.

PHOTO: QVMAG General Manager of Creative Arts & Cultural Services Tracy Puklowski and TMAG Director Janet Carding.


QVMAG workshop celebrating women

Join QVMAG in celebrating International Women's Day by exploring the Herself exhibition through spoken word and movement at a special workshop on March 13. 

The workshop will include a guided tour of the Herself exhibition by QVMAG Collections & Research Manager Dr Christine Hansen, and a specially-devised theatre workshop lead by  Public Program Officer Carmencita Palermo.

Tickets: $15 general admission

March 7 | George St, Launceston
March 12-14 | Various locations
March 13 | Cimitiere St, Launceston
March 13-14 | St Leonards Athletic Centre, Launceston
March 14 & 28 | Civic Square
March 19 | Civic Square
March 26-27 | Cataract Gorge
March 27 | CBD, Launceston

Get your free 2021-22 Seniors Card Directory

Pick up your free 2020-21 Seniors Card Directory from the City of Launceston Visitor Information Centre, located under the iconic Town Clock in Cameron St. 

The Directory is packed with hundreds of discounts and offers encouraging Tasmania's 116,000-plus Seniors Card holders to continue to remain active, try new experiences and engage with their local community.

The LVIC also sells the new Seniors Annual ($36) and Seniors 2 Year ($46) Tasmanian Parks Passes. 

Choose from 80-plus group classes at LAfit

Located inside the state of the art City of Launceston Leisure & Aquatic Centre building, LAfit offers fantastic contemporary facilities and a team of experienced and dedicated instructors and trainers.

There's now more than 80 group fitness classes to choose from including Aqua Fitness, Pilates and Yoga, and Cycling, and a variety of affordable membership options.


Good gardening: planting for autumn 

 Green thumb tips from City of Launceston horticulturalist Matt Jordan 

March is the time of year to do your general garden tidy up. As the temperature gets noticeably cooler,  plant growth slows - remove spent flowers and do some light tip pruning.

Now is also a good time to remove any organics from the garden that could encourage mould or mildew, including spoiled fruit and leaf litter. This can all go in your FOGO bin.
Start thinking about pocket planting winter annuals - pansies and violas are always a great choice due to  due to their hardiness and huge range of colours. For something a bit different, another personal favourite is ornamental kale, which really puts on a show with its leaves growing more vibrant as the temperatures drop. 

Quick links


Council meetings

Town Hall (18 St John St) | March 11 + March 25 @ 1pm


Current Development Applications


Community Grants

Community Grants for organisations provide assistance to organisations delivering projects/activities held in the Launceston municipality which result in social, cultural and environment benefits for the Launceston community.

Online applications for projects commencing after May 31 close March 31.


Event Sponsorship

The City of Launceston Event Sponsorship Program provides funding support for events that deliver a range of community, social, cultural, tourism and economic benefits to the Launceston community.

Sponsorship applications for Major Events and Small Events to be held between August 1 and December 31, 2021, close March 15.

Expressions of Interest: New Year's Eve

The City of Launceston will commit to three years of continuous funding on a triennial basis to support the municipality's primary New Year’s Eve event. Online Expressions of Interest close March 15.

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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.