Lord Mayor Graham Quirk has announced that Brisbane City Council will fast track a much needed $4 million upgrade of the Brunswick Street Mall in a bid to help struggling Valley retailers.
The Lord Mayor said his 2012 election commitment, which will give the Valley’s ageing Mall a much-needed facelift, was not due for completion until 2015/16 however was now likely to commence as early as January 2014.
In a public statement, Quirk reaffirmed that fast-tracking $2.5 million to allow the Mall to be completed in 2014 would build upon recent momentum in the city's entertainment heart which has seen a wave of new venues open. In spite of the recent activity, retailers in the Brunswick Street Mall have continued to struggle.
“The Valley is one of our most iconic entertainment and dining areas but it has clearly struggled during the day and I believe fast-tracking our $4 million upgrade of the Mall will help give it the economic boost it needs,” Cr Quirk said.
“This is also about planning for the future, including the new jobs and residents that will come from the 23 large commercial and residential projects currently underway in the Valley.
Cr Quirk said it was also important Brisbane’s popular attractions were ready to sell themselves to the world when thousands of delegates, support staff and media travel to Brisbane for next year’s G20 meeting, and the Valley was no exception.
“These visitors will need somewhere to shop, eat and play during their stay and fast-tracking our upgrade of the Mall aims to ensure the Valley’s traders are primed to share in the lucrative investment G20 will deliver for our local economy,” Cr Quirk said.
Key features of the $4 million Valley Mall refurbishment will include:
• Replacing the current brick paver surface with patterned concrete that is easier to clean and reduces trip hazards • Installing a large wire roof structure, which could support lighting and public art and provide shelter and shade • Installing small retail and art pods in the centre of the Mall