More than $31 million will be invested in the first tranche of a two tranche project that will provide additional infrastructure for Headquarters Joint Operations Command (HQJOC) in Bungendore, near Canberra, to support the doubling of the facility’s original capacity.
FILE PHOTO: HQJOC, the headquarters that directs and supports all Australian military operations, is doubling in size, despite a winding down of operations in the Middle East. Pictured are Australian Bushmasters lined up for a range practice at the Taji Military Complex, Iraq. Photo by Specialist Caroline Schofer.
Minister for Defence Linda Reynolds said HQJOC and its supporting infrastructure must expand to accommodate a significant increase in personnel needed to plan and conduct operations on a daily basis, in Australia and abroad.
“HQJOC is not only key for the defence of Australia, but also the protection of our borders in these challenging geostrategic times,” Minister Reynolds said.
“We have seen the vital role HQJOC played in the Australia’s response to the Black Summer bushfires and COVID-19 [albeit that the Australian public was completely unaware of HQJOC specific involvement – especially in Defence’s COVID-19 information vacuum].
“This investment will improve the facility’s capacity to support the Australian Defence Force’s response to domestic and international crises.
“When the expansion is complete, HQJOC will house up to 1400 personnel, doubling its capacity from when it was originally built in 2008, to cater for increasingly complex multi-domain operations including cyber and space.
“The upgrades at HQJOC will make the ADF more capable for the wide range of potential scenarios and threats Australia will face in the future,” Minister Reynolds said.
Minister for Defence Industry Melissa Price said this first tranche of works extended to mid-2022.
“Defence will leverage existing contract arrangements to expedite these works and ensure local industry content is maximised,” Minister Price said
Works on the project are expected to commence in August this year and will include the delivery of security accreditation works, a 1.9 megawatt solar farm, a car park upgrade, and site preparation works ahead of the next tranche of work expected to commence in 2022.