1600 extra workers will be needed as Queensland’s largest construction project gets ready to reach for the sky this year. The $3.6 billion Queen’s Wharf ‘integrated resort’ is earmarked for completion in late 2022, with promises it will lure an extra 1.4 million tourists to Brisbane every year.
The core complex, consuming an entire block between William and George streets in the city, will feature three hotels, a residential tower and a casino, but right now the site is merely a large pit.
Currently pouring an Olympic swimming pool of concrete every month with six pumps and nine tower cranes on the site, Destination Brisbane Consortium, a joint venture between Star Entertainment Group, Far East Consortium and Chow Tai Fook Enterprises, is also gearing up to add 1600 jobs by year’s end.
The group’s project director Simon Crooks said five basement levels to cater for 2000 car parks were currently being built and by this time next year, Brisbane residents will hopefully notice the project lifting out of the ground and into the sky.
Work on the pedestrian bridge to South Bank is also due to start in coming months.
“What you’ll see is a massive change in this precinct over the next year,” Mr Crooks said.
“Where it seemed very slow bringing the buildings down and digging the hole, you’ll see things moving extremely rapidly over the next six to 12 months,” he said.
“We’re talking about 350 men and women on-site at the moment,” Mr Crooks said.
“By the end of this year and during next year, there’ll be over 2,000.”
While the project was still yet to rise out of the ground, by early 2021 it is estimated the buildings will have already climbed 25 metres above the city’s streets.
But Mr Crooks also wanted to reassure the public that the cracking pace of the gigantic project wouldn’t flood roads with heavy vehicles or wake nearby residents in the dead of night.
“The idea here is to minimise impact during construction for the city,” he said.
“We’ve got big lockout periods in the morning and evening peaks – we’re quite supportive of that.”
“There are a number of residential towers here.”
Since builder Multiplex started laying the foundations for the massive development five months ago, five Olympic swimming pools’ worth of concrete had been poured.
When complete, Queen’s Wharf will include 50 bars and restaurants, a 100m-high Sky Deck open 24/7 giving locals panoramic views of Brisbane, and a new pedestrian bridge linking the complex to South Bank.
“It’s a great addition to Brisbane, frankly,” Mr Crooks said, talking about how the project would revolutionise the city’s image.
He said he hoped Queen’s Wharf would become Brisbane’s recognisable landmark for overseas tourists, in the same vein as Sydney’s Opera House.
“I think the last time Brisbane changed in such an exciting manner was South Bank,” he said.
“You look at what’s been curated over there – that’s an amazing offering for tourists.”
“What we’re trying to do is create something equally as good or better.”