The Howard Smith Wharves (HSW) precinct is about to embark on a new $20 million transformation, further enhancing its status as one of one of Brisbane’s most vibrant destinations.
HSW Nominees Pty Ltd, the entity behind the wharves project has submitted a proposal to further evolve the precinct which includes new riverfront operations.
Designed by little boat projects, this bold initiative aims to future-proof the entire area and enhance the entertainment offerings along the Brisbane River’s edge. To achieve this, HSW Nominees Pty Ltd has proposed a comprehensive development plan that promises to be a game-changer for the precinct.
According to the development application, the long-term strategy involves extending development to the eastern parts of the precinct, an ambitious extension that promises to redefine the riverside experience for locals and visitors alike.
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As things stand, the western half of Howard Smith Wharves is already a thriving sub-precinct. However, the backers recognise the immense potential of the eastern part of the precinct and have engaged in discussions with the City Council and other stakeholders to bring their vision to life.
The development proposed in this application comprises several key elements, each designed to enrich the riverside experience for all. These elements include:
Floating Pontoons: The installation of floating pontoons along the river’s edge will provide access to private boat berths, perfect for short-stay visits. Additionally, these pontoons will host waterfront hotels and dining establishments, echoing the successful setup seen at Felons, the flagship brewery and dining venue in the western half of the precinct.
Floating Barge for Food and Beverage Operations: In a similar vein, a floating barge, also moored to pylons, will offer food and beverage services. It promises a unique riverside dining experience that takes full advantage of Brisbane’s waterfront.
Landings: The proposed landings will be designed parallel to the existing decking and terracing at the western end of the Howard Smith Wharves precinct, ensuring a seamless transition from the established area to the new developments. These landings will include 157 meters of floating pontoons, five gangways, and one elevator, designed to maintain suitable gradients at all tide levels. Importantly, there will be a minimum separation of 25 to 30 meters from the existing Brisbane City Council (BCC) ferry terminal.
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Felons Barrel Hall Pontoon: The Felons Barrel Hall pontoon, a former active barge, will be converted into a multi-level facility. It will provide access to the site and offer a dining experience with a bar, kitchen, and seating area on the upper level, as well as lower deck facilities, including restrooms and a preparation kitchen. The elevated positioning of this facility reduces its impact on river views, preserving the scenic beauty of the area.
Trawler: The trawler, moored to the downstream pontoon, will not function as a typical vessel but rather as a fixed dining location. While it may be moved occasionally for maintenance purposes, it will primarily serve as a unique riverside dining venue, omitting tours, fishing, or passenger transport activities.
Pontoon: Dining experiences will be integrated into two floating pontoons, located on either side of the existing Mr. Percivals venue. These pontoons, each 10 meters wide, will feature enclosed spaces for kitchen and bar facilities, ample outdoor seating covered by awnings, and space for temporary boat mooring and passenger access. This innovative setup is designed to offer visitors an immersive riverside experience, much like the existing Felons Brewery.
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Staging: The entire development will be rolled out in four stages:
- Stage 1: The upstream pontoon, which includes landing structures and dining options upstream of Mr. Percivals.
- Stage 2: The downstream pontoon, with landing structures and dining options downstream of Mr. Percivals.
- Stage 3: The trawler pontoon, moored against the downstream pontoon.
- Stage 4: The Felons Barrel Hall pontoon, adjacent to the existing Felons Barrel Hall.
The flexibility of this staged approach allows for construction and use to commence in any order, with Stage 3 reliant on the completion of Stage 2.
According to planners Urbis, this ambitious development at Howard Smith Wharves reflects a commitment to creating unique, engaging, and diverse riverside experiences that capture the essence of Brisbane’s beautiful climate and surroundings.
“By leveraging the natural beauty of the Brisbane River and enhancing the precinct’s offerings, HSW Nominees Pty Ltd is poised to provide an extraordinary addition to Brisbane’s hospitality and entertainment scene.”
“As the eastern part of Howard Smith Wharves undergoes this transformation, residents and visitors can look forward to a dynamic riverside precinct that reflects the essence of Brisbane – a city that celebrates its subtropical climate and its unique connection to the beautiful river that winds through its heart. “
“Whether it’s the thrill of dining on a floating pontoon, enjoying a meal on a converted trawler, or savoring the views from the Felons Barrel Hall pontoon, this development promises to be a unique and unforgettable addition to the Brisbane landscape. “
Lord Mayor Adrian Schrinner and Deputy Premier Steven Miles have expressed their endorsement for the project, projecting an annual boost of $60 million into the local economy by 2032.
Development application link
Tell us what you think about this development below in the comment box. The development application for this project, available to view on Brisbane City Council’s Developmenti online platform is: