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Much more than just a train station: Meet Brisbane's new 'Grand Central'

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A new “Grand Central” precinct to replace the demolition site at Brisbane’s Roma St station is set to boast a world-class sports and entertainment centre, public plazas and bars, and even a retirement home.

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More details have emerged of Queensland’s biggest infrastructure venture, the $5.4 billion Cross River Rail project, with the release of a proposed development scheme for the redeveloped Roma Street station complex.

The scheme answers questions on the design and operation of the new station, other uses associated with the complex and how it will incorporate the much-vaunted Brisbane Live entertainment arena.

The new complex, due to be completed around 2025, will be built around existing heritage places, new public spaces, and parkland, with the development scheme proposing some surprise elements like retirement and residential care facilities.

The Cross River Rail Authority is expecting that over the next 15 years there will be nearly 4200 new residents and more than 19,700 new workers within the 32 hectare Roma Street priority development area, bounded roughly by Wickham Terrace, North Quay and College Rd.

The scheme states that the area will act as a place of transition between the “tall towers” dominance of the CBD and “lower scale campus-style towers that interface to surrounding neighbourhoods and Roma Street Parkland”.

The project centres around a new underground station dubbed “Grand Central”, connecting passengers with existing suburban bus and rail networks and the Brisbane City Council’s Brisbane Metro, as well as regional and interstate bus and train services.

It envisages development across three precincts – a station plaza, a major sport and recreation facility (Brisbane Live) and a city centre transition precinct.

The Roma Street redevelopment focus will be on becoming the key arrival destination for the central CBD, and the western gateway to the city’s premier cultural, leisure
and entertainment venues.

It will also aim to improve the public realm and active transport connections to encourage pedestrian movement and connections and big upgrades to rail and bus interchanges, including a realignment of the Inner Northern Busway.

“Development in the Roma Street CRR PDA will better connect and unify the area with the city centre, Spring Hill, Petrie Terrace and South Brisbane neighbourhoods and associated facilities including Suncorp Stadium, Roma Street Parkland and the Queensland Cultural Centre,” the draft development scheme states.

“Active street frontages, a range of safe and inviting public spaces and permeable, accessible connections for pedestrians and cyclists will be delivered.”

The public will have until April 1 to make submissions on the proposed development scheme before the state government decides whether to approve it.

The scheme will then replace the existing interim land use plan currently governing the Roma Street PDA.

 

 

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