Australia’s 'Biggest Urban Playground' has been unveiled in the Urban Design Masterplan for Queens Wharf Brisbane (QWB).
The renewal of the QWB offers a distinct opportunity to shape the future vibrancy and success of almost 20 per cent of Brisbane’s city centre and to deliver an integrated mixed-use development on a scale rarely seen in Australia, with an expected 40,000 visitors at maximum occupancy and boosting the CBD's event capacity to up to 150,000 people.
Queens Wharf hotels will be able to accommodate 2400 people, apartments will accommodate 3,600, while employees will reach a maximum of 10,118.
Destination Brisbane Consortium (DBC) submitted the report as part of the Plan of Development (PoD) application. The consortium views the Queen’s Wharf Brisbane Integrated Resort Development (QWBIRD) as a significant city-making opportunity for Brisbane and the State of Queensland.
Development of the public realm comprises several open space networks, including:
The public realm of the QWBIRD will be designed to be a rich and vibrant people-friendly environment, capturing Brisbane’s unique character by encouraging active and ‘alfresco’ lifestyle. The public realm and landscape vision established by the PoD and the Landscape Concept Report for QWB is centred around seven key organising ideas:
Streetscapes that respond to their role and function within the city grid and take advantage of the unique micro climate, public/private use and architectural interfaces;
The Ridgeline is a new public space system located between George and William Streets and comprises a heritage story of Brisbane and encompasses an entirely new way of moving through the city.
The adaptive re-use of buildings and the creation of a series of laneways, courtyards and active urban spaces between these buildings will create a new public realm that will link the Queen Street Mall to the Botanic Gardens.
The William Street Verandah
This represents an informal subtropical streetscape setting along William Street; defining elements of the William Street Verandah are that it has a roof and that it provides an elevated viewing position, featuring a mix of old and new facades.
Represents diverse contemporary spaces with a strong relationship to the river and its inherent character; The Undercurrent encompasses that space at the river’s edge and will transform this ‘forgotten’ riverfront area.
Cross Block Links
The Cross Block Links are the threads that connect the river with the city. They connect George Street to William Street, William Street to the river and traverse and connect zones such as Reddacliff Place to Queens Wharf Road, Queen’s Gardens to Miller Park, Stephens Lane, Printery Courtyard, and the Brisbane Steps from George Street to Queens Wharf Plaza. These links are internal to the city blocks and do not include street verges.
A new and striking bridge that is lightweight and allows long views to and from the city and South Bank are preserved; and
The Sky Gardens
Contains a vertical layering of elevated gardens within the core development - they are elevated public landscapes that are an integral part of the public realm. The Sky Gardens include:
This is a wayfinding ‘spine’ device linking Alice Street (Botanical Gardens) through the city to Queen Street Mall.
A key intent of this Sub-Precinct is to strengthen the function of the Brisbane River corridor and improve public access to the riverfront through the utilisation of reclamation areas and/or jetties to extend into the Brisbane River. As such, the PoD establishes parameters to facilitate river reclamation of a maximum width of 55 metres from the existing river edge along the length of the Sub-Precinct.
Traffic Infrastructure Changes
Road infrastructure required:
A traffic engineering report for the Queen's Wharf project, conducted by consulting firm TTM, recommends authorities look at whether the free City Loop buses could run on Saturdays and Sundays, and also Friday and Saturday nights, to improve accessibility to public transport hubs. Cyclist and Pedestrian ConnectivityOn-street connections through city centre streets Alice and Margaret Streets will become key connections in the city centre street network with the delivery of the proposed Kangaroo Point Bridge at the end of Alice and Edward Streets. It is proposed that cycles will operate within the existing one-way street network following the direction of traffic.
Unlocking The Value Of Alice Street
Alice Street accommodation focused around amenity overlooking the City Botanic Gardens, is emerging as a key focus for an increasing residential and short-term accommodation offer in the city centreThe urban block bounded by George, William, Alice and Margaret Streets will form a residentially led mixed-use sub-precinct. This unlocks the value of its proximity to the Botanic Gardens and provides a transition in uses between Parliament House, 1 William Street and the balance of the core development area.
The master plan proposes to provide seamless connections, tying in with proposals for 1 William Street as follows: »
The Undercurrent Village
The Undercurrent Village has been designed as a series of connected, high performance, ‘rooms' that enable all manner of events and activations to occur, day and night, within the context of Brisbane's birthplace.
The Queensland Police Service (QPS) did acknowledge that the anticipated influx of people to the completed QWB development (in the order of 1.4million annually) may lead to increases in crime levels in the area, specifically mentioning alcohol fuelled violence, and theft.
• A major new river’s edge public space;• Brisbane’s first elevated river plaza and permanent outdoor cinema.