Ichthys LNG Project's Manigurr-ma Village open for business

The INPEX-operated Ichthys LNG Project (the Project) today officially opened the doors of its Accommodation Village at Howard Springs, Darwin.

Named Manigurr-ma Village after the Larrakia name for the Stringybark tree, it will be home for up to 3,500 workers when it is complete in mid-2014. About 1,000 of the Project’s construction workforce will move in to the village over the next few months.

The milestone was marked by an opening ceremony attended by more than 100 guests, including Northern Territory Chief Minister Adam Giles, Larrakia elders, neighbouring residents and Project personnel who enjoyed a tour of the facilities.

Speaking at the ceremony Managing Director Ichthys LNG Project Antoine Serceau said Manigurr-ma Village was designed to provide a safe, comfortable and relaxed second home for the Project’s necessary fly-in, fly-out personnel.

“A well-designed accommodation village fosters a sense of community and a happier and healthier workforce. It also reduces pressure on community services by providing accommodation, food, security, social and recreational outlets, health and other services,” Mr Serceau said.

“Building an accommodation village for this part of the Project’s construction workforce makes sense, because the Darwin population is also forecast to grow during this time, with more workers and families expected to come for job opportunities on a range of different projects.”

The final 67 hectare village will include a 50-seat cinema, swimming pool, outdoor beach volleyball court, cardio and spin room, gym, music room, basketball and tennis courts, cricket nets, internet café, shop and much more.

A 24/7 medical centre will help to alleviate pressure on public health services and cut unnecessary emergency call-outs. Comprehensive planning for Manigurr-ma Village has been underway since Darwin was first considered as a location for the Project’s onshore LNG processing plant in 2008. Environmental, social, health and traffic impact assessments were completed and community consultation and engagement has been extensive.

Mr Serceau said of the $260 million capital expenditure for Manigurr-ma Village, around 60 per cent had been committed to local contracts.

“NT based businesses are undertaking a wide range of works - everything from tiling to traffic control,” Mr Serceau said. “Around 90 per cent of the current village construction workforce is from the Territory. With more than 400 people on site, that’s a great number of local jobs.”

The village is being built in four stages. Stage one completion includes 1,000 rooms and key central facilities such as the kitchen, tavern, administration buildings and recreational spaces. Construction on stages two and three has already begun.

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