New strategy to shape a better City West for residents and visitors

Developing Roma Street Rail Yards as a prominent 'gateway' to the city is among the proposals in a new strategic document to assist in future planning for the City West precinct.

A walkway linking Caxton Street to Roma Street for Suncorp Stadium patrons and the general public is also detailed in a series of plans designed to improve connectivity in the area.

The Deputy Premier and Treasurer, Mr Terry Mackenroth, today joined Lord Mayor, Councillor Campbell Newman, at Petrie Terrace to launch the City West Strategy.

Mr Mackenroth said a joint State Government-Brisbane City Council taskforce developed the strategy after public consultation primarily to help guide both levels of government to improve connectivity in the area and to better utilise public space.

The City West precinct stretches from the northern tip of South Brisbane and the western fringe of the CBD to parts of Milton, Petrie Terrace and up to Kelvin Grove.

It covers the sites of several sports and social venues, including the yet-to-be-completed Gallery of Modern Art, Suncorp Stadium, Roma Street Parklands, Victoria Park Golf Course, Caxton Street and QUT - Kelvin Grove campus.

"We need to improve connectivity in the City West precinct," Mr Mackenroth said.

"Places such as Caxton Street and Suncorp Stadium have created great social settings for people to gather which is good for local businesses and the wider community, but I believe we can do more to improve travel around the area.

"Anyone walking from one part of the precinct to the other can face a maze of road crossings and detours before they reach their destination.

"City West trips can be equally frustrating and confusing for motorists. "The documents released today, with their recommendations for more pathways, 'pedestrian-friendlier' planning and a better road network achieves a more accessible City West.

" The City West Strategy contains a number of major project proposals including:

* Future development of the Roma Street Rail Yards to be integrated with the public domain of surrounding precincts;

* Queensland Place (which includes the new Magistrates Court) to address and enhance Roma Street as a 'boulevard' and improve pedestrian/cycle connections;

* The Queensland Cultural Centre project to support Grey Street links to City West and the evaluation of new links to North Quay; and

* The public domain of the Kelvin Grove Urban Village project to be integrated with the wider public domain.

The City West Strategy recommended the production of some smaller, more detailed planning studies, two of which were also released today; the Draft Roma Milton Precinct Plan and the Draft Barracks Precinct Plan.

The Green Belt and Normanby Precinct Plans are due in early 2005.

Mr Mackenroth said the pedestrian infrastructure for Suncorp Stadium, deferred while City West looked at integrating it more with the precinct, was detailed in the Draft Barracks Precinct Master Plan.

He said under the plan, the stadium walkway would be constructed as a Caxton Street extension through the old Police Barracks and onto Roma Street within a budget of $12 Million.

"The walkway would not only offer another way of getting to the stadium, which would be invaluable for managing patrons on game day, but would also form a convenient public domain from Roma Street to Caxton Street at all hours of the day," Mr Mackenroth said.

"I think in time, as links are developed through the Victoria and Police Barracks site and onto pedestrian infrastructure that lead to the Roma Street Parkland, the whole area could be an exciting hub of activity for Brisbane.

" The Roma Milton Plan sets the scene for more detailed work in the Barracks Plan and indicates a possible public design competition for improvements to McCormick Place, situated between Eagle Terrace, Upper Roma Street and Saul Street.

It also contains a transportation analysis with suggestions to introduce two-way traffic along the streets of City West, create a significantly safer pedestrian environment and develop a more direct entry into the city from the west.

The Barracks Precinct Master Plan, in addition to offering a proposed route for the stadium walkway, provides detailed public space and development recommendations for the area.

Lord Mayor, Campbell Newman, said the taskforce supported mixed-use development for the Barracks site where entertainment and recreation opportunities co-existed with residential living.

"Of course both plans are draft documents for public comment and many recommendations, particularly the traffic suggestions, would require further engineering investigation from Council," he said.

"However, these documents represent a huge step forward for the whole City West region.

"They give us great ideas on what we could achieve if we used the land and infrastructure in this vibrant part of the city in a more co-ordinated and integrated manner.

"The documents map out a long term vision and set a framework for planning in the area so they should be helpful tools for our city's planners.

"They highlight the importance of ensuring that our public spaces, roads and walkways have a long term plan that delivers economic, social and cultural advantages," Cr Newman said.

Copies of the documents released today can be obtained at or by visiting the City West Taskforce office at 47 Warner Street, Fortitude Valley.

Public submissions on both draft plans should be sent to:

City West Taskforce

C/- Department of Local Government, Planning, Sport and Recreation

P.O. Box 15031 City East
Queensland 4002
Fax: (07) 3247 3638
Further enquiries: Acting Premier's Office: (07) 3224 6900
Lord Mayor's Office: Francis Quinlivan 0408 709 160