Brisbane Willing to Commit $1 Million For Crisis Housing at Pinkenba Quarantine Facility

Brisbane is willing to commit $1 million to help fund a plan to convert the 500-bed Pinkenba quarantine facility into crisis accommodations for the homeless.

A petition for the emergency accommodation has been made at the city level and conversations on the cost-effective use of the facility are expected to move forward in the middle of May 2023. 

As the housing crisis escalates, a push to open the 500-bed Pinkenba quarantine facility has been laid out, with discussions expected to start at the national, state, and city levels.

Brisbane has announced its willingness to commit $1 million to this plan to help fund further work that has to be done to change the Pinkenba quarantine facility into a crisis accommodation for the homeless. 

“We’re all tired of hearing the excuses about why this can’t happen so I’m putting $1 million on the table as a down payment to help make this happen,” Cr Adrian Schrinner said.

“I know this facility wasn’t purpose-built for crisis housing but it’s a whole lot better than living in a car or a tent – and that’s exactly what’s occurring right across Brisbane right now while this 500-bed facility sits idle.”

Pinkenba Quarantine Facility
Photo Credit: LordMayorAdrianSchrinner/Facebook

Meanwhile, Treasurer Jim Chalmers said that the Federal Government, which owns the Pinkenba quarantine facility, is ready to work with their State and Council counterparts. However, they have yet to see a formal approach to this plan. 

Karyn Walsh, the CEO of Micah Projects, a charity for the homeless, said that moving people into the facility has to be clearly outlined given the diversity of the population. The solution should also work out a more permanent outcome that would put an end to the struggles of the homeless or rough sleepers. 

It comes as more than 50 people living in tents at Musgrave Park in the inner city have been moved to temporary accommodation in time for the biggest cultural event in Brisbane, the Panyiri Festival, on 20 and 21 May 2023. Fences in some sections of the park are expected to go up on 15 May 2023. 

Published 15-May-2023