The people of Queensland are set to reap the profits from developments built around Cross River Rail priority areas, including the proposed Brisbane Live arena after the Queensland Government-owned QIC was awarded the redevelopment rights of lucrative station sites.
In what is arguably Australia’s most successful Government-owned investment corporation, the Queensland Investment Corporation will develop an estimated $3 billion worth of projects surrounding Cross River Rail station hubs in Boggo Road, Woolloongabba, Albert St and Roma St.
Following the appointment of QIC’s new CEO, it can now be confirmed that the State has formalised the agreement for QIC to deliver real estate solutions for four of the above-ground precincts of Brisbane’s Cross River Rail.
These agreements establish QIC as the precinct developer of these four transit-oriented precincts – Boggo Road, Woolloongabba, Albert Street and Roma Street.
QIC is the manager of the Queensland Future Fund (QFF), which was established as part of the State’s strategy to ensure responsible budget management.
The development rights to these four key precincts have been transferred to the QFF to extend the participation of the State and provide greater certainty to their ultimate delivery.
According to QIC, the development and activation of the precincts can commence as construction of the tunnel, rail and station infrastructure concludes, which is currently forecast to be in 2023 and 2024.
The Cross River Rail Delivery Authority (CRRDA) will continue to be responsible for the completion of these underground tunnels, stations and rail works. QIC will continue to work with CRRDA and Economic Development Queensland in developing these assets.
QIC Global Real Estate Managing Director Michael O’Brien said QIC was proud to take on the role of precinct developer.
“This is an unprecedented opportunity for QIC to work with the Queensland Government, Cross River Rail Development Authority and Economic Development Queensland (EDQ) to refine the master plans for the above ground sites with the goal of providing Brisbane with connected city-shaping lifestyle, residential and commercial precincts,” Mr O’Brien said.
QIC will spend the next three years masterplanning the precincts while the rail lines continue to be constructed, with the Woolloongabba and Roma Street sites earmarked for Olympics focused development in alignment with delivering a legacy for Brisbane.
According to QIC, the vision is to deliver vibrant, personalised and connected spaces – designed for the people of Brisbane.
Priority Development Areas (PDAs) have been declared at each of these new stations, with development lots to be created throughout 2023 and 2024 as construction of the tunnel, rail and station infrastructure concludes.
Meanwhile, preparations have been made to link together the future Woolloongabba Cross River Rail station and Olympic Games master planning activities.
Deputy Premier and Minister for State Development Steven Miles said the planning arrangements would deliver a super connected precinct and support the Gabba as the proposed main stadium when Queensland hosts the 2032 Olympic and Paralympic Games.
“Most of the planning for the Priority Development Area (PDA) took place before Brisbane was confirmed as the host city for the 2032 Olympic and Paralympic Games,” Mr Miles said.
“Brisbane’s bid was helped enormously because we are already building Cross River Rail and most of the venues are already built or will be temporary.
“But because the 2032 Games will serve as a catalyst for a long-needed redevelopment of The Gabba, it makes sense to put a new interim land use plan in place while significant work is undertaken to understand how it relates to the broader PDA.
“This smart planning will deliver a super connected games hub just two kilometres from the CBD, and support an upgrade of the Gabba to a capacity of around 50,000.”
The existing interim land use plan (ILUP) for the Woolloongabba Cross River Rail Priority Development Area (PDA) will be replaced from next Wednesday, 24 November 2021.
Minister for Transport and Main Roads Mark Bailey said the opportunity would see the economic and community outcomes maximised for East Brisbane locals and the state as whole.
“This is a terrific opportunity to deliver the new underground station at Woolloongabba while also determining how to ensure the 2032 Games leave a lasting legacy for Brisbane and Queensland,” Mr Bailey said.
“Cross River Rail is a massive project that will completely transform the way people travel to and from Brisbane’s inner city.
“Pumping more than $4 million a day into the economy, this critical project is helping drive Queensland’s economic recovery from COVID-19 and was key to securing the Games.
“This new land use plan will include specific provisions for affordable and social housing, and co-designed public space outcomes – honouring the commitment made at last year’s election.
“It protects and maintains our commitment to ensure the Gabba precinct includes 50 per cent open space as well as affordable housing for nurses, teachers and other frontline workers.
“The community will be able to have its say on the PDA next year when a proposed development scheme is released for public consultation.”
Deputy Premier Steven Miles said the Cross River Rail Delivery Authority, Economic Development Queensland, and other relevant agencies would work together on the planning for the Woolloongabba CRR PDA.
“We’re writing a new chapter for the Gabba, the city and the state.”