Skip to main content
Construction workers wearing orange high-vis uniforms and hard hats working on the rooftop of a building with cranes operating overhead in the daytime.

Australia’s leading innovation district, Tonsley, is continuing to grow and attract new businesses and recognition.

Tonsley is managed by Renewal SA on behalf of the state government and is Australia’s most awarded innovation district, in recognition of its successful transformation from the Mitsubishi car manufacturing plant into a thriving mixed-use district.

Tonsley is home to over 30 businesses and over 80 members of the two co-working spaces on site, plus the Flinders University School of Computer Science, Engineering and Mathematics and TAFE SA. About 1200 people are employed on site – more than when Mitsubishi ceased manufacturing cars on the site in 2008.

ProTom Asia Pacific Centre of Excellence for Proton Therapy

Yesterday (Thursday, 8 March), the ProTom Asia Pacific Centre of Excellence for Proton Therapy was officially launched. The centre will be housed in a purpose-built building at Tonsley. It will be used for the assembly of Proton Therapy Units for the Asia Pacific region as well as testing, software development and training. Proton therapy is a cutting-edge cancer treatment that enables doctors to specifically target tumours in sensitives places in the body, with less risk of damaging surrounding organs or tissue.

Renewal energy plant

Tonsley will also become the home of an Australian-first, $11.4 million demonstration plant that will produce hydrogen from renewable energy. The plant, to be built by Australian Gas Infrastructure Group (AGIG) will produce hydrogen from renewable energy, which will then be injected into the local gas distribution network.

NVI named Top Challenger

Flinders University’s New Venture Institute (NVI) at Tonsley has achieved global recognition by being named the Top Challenger in the Asia Pacific in the latest UBI World Benchmark Study for university-linked business incubators and accelerators. NVI outperformed the top 10% of incubation programs worldwide in the category of talent retention and ranked significantly above the global average for economic impact, start-up creation and post-incubation performance.

Future factory now open

One of the southern hemisphere’s ‘future factories’ is now open for business at the Tonsley Manufacturing Innovation Hub, driven by Flinders University, the state government and the Innovative Manufacturing Cooperative Research Centre.

The hub showcases the latest automation, sensor, monitoring, robotic and cobotic technologies and will provide training and real world research opportunities for students, researchers and businesses.

Welcome to Tonsley Village

In January, Peet Group released the first terrace homes and apartments for sale off the plan as part of Tonsley Village.

Up to 850 homes will be built on land to the north-west of the Main Assembly Building. It will be part of Renewal SA’s vision to develop Tonsley as a vibrant mixed-use precinct that enables residents to interact with the businesses and research community on site to support design and creation of new products and services.

Tonsley Village is expected to support an estimated 780 construction jobs over nine years and generate an estimated $265 million in housing investment.

The display centre for Tonsley Village was built by Specialised Solutions, one of two South Australian construction industry firms that have established in Tonsley’s Western Plant building.

Pre-fab pair commit to Tonsley

Smith Brothers Group and Specialised Solutions have each taken out leases with options to buy their portions of the 13,000-square metre Western Plant building within three years.

The firms exemplify the collaborative nature of Tonsley, as they have already worked together on pre-fabricated modular bathrooms, pods and plant rooms for high rise apartment projects in Adelaide CBD. Both have expanded their skilled workforces since moving to Tonsley on a temporary basis and have plans for further expansion.

Accolades abound

Tonsley continues to gain national recognition and has been named as a finalist in four award categories in the prestigious 2018 Property Council of Australia/Rider Levett Bucknall Innovation and Excellence Awards, to be announced in Sydney in May. These include Best Mixed Use Development and National Development of the Year.

Was this page helpful? 
Would you like to be contacted about this feedback?