Queen’s Wharf Brisbane casino resort: under review

This multi-billion dollar project could become Queensland’s largest private sector development, if state government approves the widely contested proposal for an integrated resort.

The controversial Queen’s Wharf Brisbane casino resort is one step closer to becoming reality, as the Queensland government considers the development plan that has just been submitted.
The proposed design covers 27.5 hectares of state-owned land on the Brisbane riverfront. This could be seen as an ambitious move, considering previous plans covered only nine hectares. The site, which boasts a number of historic and government buildings, holds national and historic significance, since this is where Brisbane’s colonial history began.
This multi-billion dollar project will stand out at as Queensland’s largest private sector development, spanning almost 20 percent of the city centre, if given the green light. This is no small feat, with locals and visitors alike set to enjoy an impressive amount of public space, amounting to 12 football fields.
The plan features an “integrated resort”, including five hotels, 50 bars, restaurants, retail spaces, and a casino as the star attraction. Residents will have their choice from up to 2000 apartments and there will be a number of new buildings reaching 67 storeys in height.
There are currently 13 existing buildings occupying the area, eight of which are heritage-listed and will be preserved and adapted for other uses. Four buildings are pegged for demolition, including the Neville Bonner Building, which received the FDG Stanley Award for Public Architecture in 1999.
The development is no stranger to controversy, having been condemned by a number of built environment organisations, due to its sheer size and scale. There are also concerns the proposed development does little to build connections between parliamentary buildings and new government offices in the area.
The project has also been slammed for its potential to completely dwarf the historic fabric of the area, thanks to its overwhelming size. The Queensland chapter of the Australian Institute of Architects, the Australian Institute of Landscape Architects and the Urban Design Alliance joined forces to submit a statement criticising the proposal in 2015.
If the proposal is approved, non-heritage-listed buildings will be demolished this year, with 2022 earmarked as the project completion date.
You can read the development application here.