The Australian Department of Defence has approved a A$495m ($364.04m) investment for the establishment of two new facilities at the Larrakeyah Defence Precinct in the Northern Territory.

Australia’s Larrakeyah Defence Precinct is located approximately 2km west of the Darwin Central Business District (CBD) and comprises the Larrakeyah Barracks and HMAS Coonawarra.

The first project will see the Australian Government invest a total of A$272m ($200.04m) in new facilities in order to support naval operations within the north of the country.

"The project will enhance the Australian Defence Force’s (ADF) capacity to conduct operations and exercises in the north of Australia."

The scope of the project involves the development of a new outer wharf, which would be used to support the Royal Australian Navy’s (RAN) major surface combatant vessels and submarines.

Australian Defence Minister Marise Payne said: “The project will enhance the Australian Defence Force’s (ADF) capacity to conduct operations and exercises in the north of Australia, while providing fuel storage and refuelling capabilities to meet current and projected demands.”

Additionally, a further A$223m ($164m) will be invested for the redevelopment of the Larrakeyah base, including the upgrade and overhaul of critical in-ground infrastructure.

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The works are intended to help support on-base growth over the next 25 years, while providing an improved working environment for the country’s defence personnel.

Payne added: “This investment in defence facilities will enhance support to ADF operations and maximise opportunities for local industry.”

UK-based construction company Laing O’Rourke has been selected as the managing contractor for both of the Larrakeyah Defence Precinct projects.

Construction works on the developments are slated to begin later this year and will be completed by mid-2023.

A Local Industry Capability Plan has been developed to optimise opportunities for small-to-medium local businesses in the Northern Territory, allowing them to compete for and win sub-contracts related to the two projects.