Government investment package aims to revitalise Dunedin

Dunedin's Hillside rail workshops are getting back on track, thanks to the Government's Provincial Growth Fund.

It's part of a $60 million package of investment in the southern city, aimed at kickstarting its engineering and digital industries.

It's expected the Hillside workshops will become a hive of activity again, after getting a $20 million reboot.

"Well we nailed our political colours to the mast of rail," says Shane Jones, Regional Economic Development Minister.

Dunedin South MP Clare Curran vowed to keep fighting when the workshops all but closed seven years ago.

"We said that we would get Hillside back on track, and we've done it," says Curran.

With the Government spending more than $1 billion on rail, it's ensuring there are quality local facilities available to maintain KiwiRail's trains. 

The Provincial Growth Fund is investing in eight other Dunedin engineering projects, creating almost 90 new jobs.

"Good for us, but it's going to be good for the younger people too," says Mike Beaufort, KiwiRail Dunedin's project team leader.

"Let's get some of these younger people in here and get them trained."

There is also $10 million to help establish a centre of excellence for the digital and gaming industry.

And the city's ambitious waterfront redevelopment has been granted $20 million for work on infrastructure around the Steamer Basin.

But the tide ran out on the waterfront grant - it's understood the council had asked for close to $100 million.

"The council wanted more for the development down at the waterfront, but if we'd supported that in its entirety, we wouldn't have been able to do these other good things," says Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker.