Kane Transport could be calling the Ballarat West Employment Zone home by the end of the year after the advertising phase of planning for the company’s new location was completed in late April.
The new transport hub along Liberator Drive within BWEZ will be twice as large as the company’s current home in Alfredton’s Production Drive and will allow it to quadruple its output.
Kane Transport managing director Paul Kane said the development of BWEZ had provided the growing company with an incentive to remain in Ballarat.
He also said the imminent expansion had allowed the company to buy new vehicles and put on new staff. The business currently employs 19 workers with 16 vehicles.
“We really sat on our hands for nearly two years and we were looking at relocating part of the business to Melbourne but we changed our minds when this site opened up,” Mr Kane said.
City of Ballarat development and planning director Angelique Rush said no objections had been received to the Kane development.
“The Ballarat Freight Hub is undergoing infrastructure design and further comment will require Development Victoria (Formally Major Projects Victoria),” Ms Lush said.
“The application will be decided under delegation by officers and is expected to be decided within the strategic time frame of 60 days.”
Mr Kane said he hoped construction on the new hub would begin shortly, however the severity of winter weather would play a role.
Kane is one of four businesses to have been revealed as tenants within the precinct, joining Broadbent Grain, farm machinery business Agrimac and mammoth brewing operation Broo.
In February the state government released a further 55 hectares of land at the site, on top of the 35 hectares for Broadbent, Kane and Agrimac and the 14.84 hectare Broo plot.
Broadbent, which was the first company to sign on to the precinct, has begun using its site and is expected to be fully operational out of BWEZ by the end of the month.
While construction of the Broo brewery is not expected to begin until February 2018, when completed the mammoth site is expected to employ 100 workers and produce 480 million bottles of beer a year.
The brewery, which will be supplying beer into the Asian market, is being touted as the ‘world’s greenest brewery’ and is expected to save 300 million litres of water a year compared to traditional brewing methods.
At its completion the $30 million employment zone, which is a joint project between the City of Ballarat and the state government, is expected to generate 9000 jobs.