Brisbane: A city of opportunity
Brisbane is bouncing back from the disruptions of the COVID-19 global pandemic with a multibillion-dollar transformation of its skyline and infrastructure.
With $15 billion in tourism-related transport and property developments in the pipeline, the Queensland capital is propelling itself into a well-connected, vibrant city of the future.
Two major mass and rapid transit projects are under construction. The airport has increased capacity within its 24/7 operations. A multibillion-dollar live venue precinct is in the planning. And the riverside entertainment and leisure Queens Wharf is well underway, complementing other hotel and tourism developments.
Brisbane’s rejuvenation is clear to see with the number of cranes on the horizon. In early 2021 the city recorded its second biggest increase in the “crane index” since 2015.
As southeast Queensland continues to attract more Australians to live than any other city, Brisbane is forging a new urban path.
City authorities have planned to retain its prized lifestyle and increase green spaces, while retaining its friendly and liveable character.
Here are some of the major developments happening around Brisbane.
Brisbane Airport’s second runway
Opened in July 2020, Brisbane Airport’s $1.1 billion second runway was the biggest aviation project in the country.
The 3300-metre-long runway provides for a doubling of capacity at the airport, which operates without a curfew around the clock, setting it apart from other major Australian facilities.
It increases the peak capacity of 50 flights an hour to up to 110 traffic movements.
This boost in capacity will underpin access to Brisbane’s international connectivity and the future growth of the region. It also allows more options for visitors with more airlines expected to transit to the city.
It has been tipped that the economic contribution of the Brisbane Airport will double from its current $4 billion per year to $8.7 billion by 2040.
Brisbane International Cruise Terminal
Also completed in mid-2020 was the $177 million Brisbane International Cruise Terminal at the Port of Brisbane.
Currently closed, due to the pause in global cruising, the Brisbane International Cruise Terminal is built for the future needs of the industry that, pre-pandemic, was the fastest-growing tourism sector.
Brisbane’s new terminal caters for the largest and most contemporary cruise liners, and will attract new ships to the region.
Pre-COVID, it was expected to deliver a massive boost to the cruise industry in the region with more than 760,000 visitors, who would contribute $1.3 billion in net spending to the local economy.
Once back in operations, the Brisbane International Cruise Terminal will feature a two-level terminal with a food and retail precinct, access to public transport, security and quarantine facilities, public open spaces and onsite carparking for up to 900 vehicles.
The $3.6 billion development is transforming the face of Brisbane’s riverfront and is forecast to attract an additional 1.39 million tourists per annum.
The Destination Brisbane Consortium integrated resort precinct includes a casino, more than 1000 new prestige hotel rooms, more than 2000 apartments, and a 1000-seat ballroom.
Public space is also paramount. The venues will connect to the popular recreation precinct South Bank through the Neville Bonner pedestrian bridge. More than 12 football fields of public space will provide active recreation and green spaces.
The major development is expected to generate 2000 jobs during construction, and 8000 across the development once it is open for business in 2024.
Brisbane Metro is a city-shaping project that is set to provide high-frequency, safe and green transit by 2023.
Led by Brisbane City Council, the $1 billion Brisbane Metro project is currently under construction.
It will span 21 kilometres across the city, connecting the city to the suburbs with 18 stations between Eight Mile Plains south of the Brisbane River, and Roma Street north of the river.
Running on a turn-up-and-go basis, the all-electric vehicles will provide easy and reliable public transport for the growing region.