A woman is swabbed for COVID-19 at a drive through testing station at Springfield. Picture: NCA NewsWire/Dan Peled
A woman is swabbed for COVID-19 at a drive through testing station at Springfield. Picture: NCA NewsWire/Dan Peled

Here is your Friday Top Five, with editor Andrew Korner

IT HAS been a week again dominated by COVID-19 headlines, not least because of the extremely concerning developments down in Victoria.

Up here in Ipswich, where our region has been fortunate to remain free of the dreaded virus for so long, we made headlines of our own following news two people had tested positive following known contact with active cases.

Hundreds of people did the right thing and subjected themselves to testing, with long queues at Springfield as health authorities scrambled to open a pop-up testing station outside Orion Shopping Centre.

So far, thankfully, it seems as though we have not seen a sudden outbreak, but there were some anxious moments.

 

1. Ipswich woman tests positive, or does she?

 

A woman reacts after being swabbed for COVID-19 at Springfield. Picture: NCA NewsWire/Dan Peled
A woman reacts after being swabbed for COVID-19 at Springfield. Picture: NCA NewsWire/Dan Peled

 

There was a scare midway through this week when it appeared as though a local woman had tested positive for coronavirus, with no known link to the case. It seemed we had dodged a bullet when it turned out the result was a false positive, as later proven in subsequent testing.

Despite this welcome news, it still feels like it is too early to relax, given what is happening across Victoria.

 

2. Restaurant shuts down as hotel acquired for quarantine

 

BLVD Restaurant has been forced to vacate its premises at the Springfield Lakes Hotel due to the hotel becoming a quarantine centre.
BLVD Restaurant has been forced to vacate its premises at the Springfield Lakes Hotel due to the hotel becoming a quarantine centre.

Owners of a Springfield Lakes restaurant claimed they had no warning that the hotel they operate from was to be used to house people in coronavirus quarantine. The restaurant was forced to shut as a result and the owners were left fuming. We will continue to follow this story as it develops.

 

3. Milestone in CBD reconstruction

 

View of new civic plaza as part of Ipswich CBD redevelopment from under construction council administration building.
View of new civic plaza as part of Ipswich CBD redevelopment from under construction council administration building.

 

With all that is going on it certainly seems like we are in the midst of some kind of major transition. There are changes of a much more obvious kind going on in our CBD and Ipswich City Council was keen as mustard to promote the progress being made. The aerial view of our new-look CBD is encouraging and I cannot wait to see how it looks in a few months' time. Perhaps it will finally give us something to be proud of that poor old part of town.

 

4. Business is blooming

 

Currey Flowers sales manager Sonia Lee – Bitmead.
Currey Flowers sales manager Sonia Lee – Bitmead.

 

Currey is a well known name across Ipswich and it was great to catch up with them this week to see how the florist business has been going since COVID-19 cam along and changed everything. Proving our current situation is a double-edged sword, the restrictions on visits to hospitals and nursing homes has resulted in more people sending flowers to loved ones, and an increase in business for Curreys during April.

 

5. Winternats hopes go up in smoke

 

Big crowds have enjoyed the Winternats in previous years. Sadly, this year’s event won’t be happening.
Big crowds have enjoyed the Winternats in previous years. Sadly, this year’s event won’t be happening.

 

Despite being postponed by several months, organisers of the year's biggest drag racing event remained hopeful of putting on a show this year. Those hopes were dashed when cases in the southern states started going through the roof, and borders were shut. The loss of the event is not only disappointing for drag racing fans, but will also take a significant chunk out of the Ipswich economy.



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