Summit over how to transform CBD on tonight

MORE than 250 Ipswich residents, leaders in their union, church or community organisations, will meet at Ipswich City Uniting Church tonight to discuss solutions to CBD vacancies and a range of issues.

The 6pm meeting is co-ordinated by the Queensland Community Alliance, a group event organiser Dave Copeman said was "a new way form of people power, where active citizens organise for the common good, and ask political leaders to support the solutions we have found together".

Mr Copeman said Ipswich Mayor Paul Pisasale, MPs Jennifer Howard and Jim Madden and councillors Andrew Antoniolli and Cheryl Bromage would be in attendance.

"We will be asking Mayor Pisasale to commit support for a ReNEW Newcastle style program, to lend vacant storefronts to new startups and entrepreneurs," Mr Copeman said.

"The Alliance has identified 50 vacant shopfronts in the CBD.

"We will also asking for funds for a community worker to promote and engage people in the project, as well as all council owned vacant store fronts in the CDB being part of the scheme.

"This will build on the Council's existing Activate Ipswich program, and get it to the scale where it can really have an impact.

"We will be asking health leaders, including Sue McKee, the CEO of the Ipswich Hospital, and Ken Murphy, the CEO of the Primary Health Network, to announce their support for a Collective Impact Project to improve mental health services."

Mr Copeman said Health Minister Cameron Dick, as well as local mental health organisations, supported the project and would attend this evening.

"These demands come out of a year long process of listening to community concerns, about lack of safety in the CBD, and problems accessing appropriate mental health services," Mr Copeman said.



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