Prime Townsville waterfront CBD site to become world-class marine science precinct

17 May 2018

Queensland Government: Port of Townsville’s Harbour City Project will kick off with the development of a key parcel of land as an iconic global centre of excellence for marine science and research.

The site is currently home to the offices of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority, and is located between Reef HQ – the world’s largest living coral reef aquarium and Australia’s land-based showcase for the Great Barrier Reef – and the Museum of Tropical Queensland.

The site on Flinders Street, which was part of the historical port and city beginnings, boasts 60 metres of prime water-frontage on Ross Creek. Redevelopment of this site will be a catalyst project within the Port’s Harbour City precinct, which will ultimately see 10 hectares of prime waterfront land located along both sides of Ross Creek revitalised.

The Port is seeking Expressions of Interest (EOI) from developers to undertake the redevelopment of the Flinders Street site under a long-term lease arrangement.

Minister for Transport and Main Roads, The Hon. Mark Bailey MP, said the development is an opportunity for a developer to put their mark on a globally-recognised icon of the city.

“The redevelopment of this site is a unique opportunity for a developer to create a distinctive precinct that showcases Townsville’s world-leading marine science and research capabilities right in the heart of the Townsville CBD,” said Minister Bailey.

Member for Townsville Scott Stewart said the development would encourage access for locals and visitors alike to the significant Townville site.

“This is terrific news for Townsville and I’m thrilled about the possibilities for ongoing economic and commercial revitalisation of the site.

Port of Townsville Limited Chief Executive Officer Ranee Crosby said:

“It will take what has been an underutilised piece of Flinders Street and Ross Creek and transform it into a place where visitors will be delighted and that locals will be proud of.”

Mayor Jenny Hill said the development would help revitalise that part of the city and spur further developments in the Waterfront Priority Development Area.

“This precinct has represented a strong connection between the people of Townsville and both the Great Barrier Reef and our regional history through Reef HQ and the Museum of tropical Queensland,” Mayor Hill said.

“Redeveloping this site will revitalise that area of the city and provide a new community precinct with improved public access and renewed retail and tourism offerings.”

Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority (GBRMPA) General Manager Bruce Elliot said that they were ready to secure new office accommodation.

“The Federal government committed funding under the Townsville City Deal for new office accommodation for GBRMPA employees and we are looking for 3000 sqm of state-of-the-art accommodation in close proximity to our education-centre Reef HQ,” said Mr Elliot.

The site is earmarked to be the centrepiece of a collaborative centre of excellence for marine science and research, and will incorporate commercial, retail, tourism and education facilities. The redevelopment will integrate with the Reef HQ Aquarium and Museum of Tropical Queensland, with headquarter office accommodation for GBRMPA and other organisations, showcase facilities for James Cook University, Australian Institute of Marine Science and other leading and emerging marine research, training and education industries.

The waterfront will be activated through retail and tourism facilities, public walkways and open spaces that encourage public access and linkages.

Expressions of interest information is available to download from the 4th of May 2018 from the QTender website at

This EOI closes at 3.00pm AEST on Friday 6th July 2018.




Source:   Queensland Government -

Contact:  Media Enquiries - Carmel Robertson, 0439 347 875

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