$210m move for Defence

AN ambitious $210.2 million project to relocate the Defence National Storage and Distribution Centre's Joint Logistic Command in Moorebank is under way.

Some 45 warehouses storing army equipment will be relocated from a leased site on to commonwealth land.

The works are part of a national defence logistics relocation program costing $752 million. Once completed, the new logistics program is estimated to save taxpayers more than $74 million a year in operational costs.

The Moorebank works, which will be the largest relocation move in the country, will generate around 1870 jobs with a targeted 70 per cent allocation to local industry.

It will also generate an estimated $18 million to the Sydney economy.

Director-general of capital facilities and infrastructure, Brigadier Darren Naumann, said the relocation works were needed to modernise defence logistics operations.

"There are 201 warehouses across Australia with some dated as old as 1921," he said.

"Moorebank warehouses are some of the oldest. The current warehouses have inactive space that remains un-utilised because of the design. New high-rise warehouses will allow stacking and racking of goods virtually from floor to ceiling, and will in effect reduce the defence footprint and increase [effectiveness]."

Last week the Defence Department appeared before the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Public Works at an open forum to discuss the development's effect on the local community and environment.

It was revealed that a number of sites contaminated with asbestos and "carbon-impacted soil" had been identified at Moorebank. Lieutenant Colonel Damian Drane said removal of the contaminants would be undertaken with the community in mind.

"It is the responsibility of the contractors to identify these contaminations and remove them," he said.

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