All the great cities around the world have got one — and now Brisbane is in line for a spectacular aquarium of its own.
A world-class aquarium is part of a proposed $100 million revelopment of the Queensland Maritime Museum in South Bank.
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said the proposal for the museum and aquarium project suggested it could attract up to 750,000 visitors a year, and contribute up to $200 million a year to the Queensland economy.
“This is an exciting proposal that will provide another important drawcard for more tourists and more jobs,” the Premier said.
Details on the proposed aquarium are scant, but Deputy Premier Jackie Trad said the project would be located in the South Bank Parklands precinct and linked to the planned Queen’s Wharf entertainment precinct by the existing Goodwill Bridge.
“The proponents will have to demonstrate how the project will incorporate existing heritage buildings on the site, and enhance, not detract from, the surrounding area,” the Deputy Premier said.
The proposal has been put forward as part of the Government’s Market-Led Proposal initiative, which allows the private sector to suggest ideas to the government, rather than waiting for the government to put proposals out to tender.
Treasurer Curtis Pitt said this particular project had been proposed by the Queensland Maritime Museum (QMM), in partnership with Advanced Aquarium Technologies and Crossley Architects.
“The State government has now approved the project to move from the initial assessment stage to the second stage of the MLP process, and undergo detailed assessment,” Mr Pitt said.
“This is the third MLP project that has progressed from the initial assessment stage to detailed assessment. The MLP projects to move into detailed assessment promise an extra $650 million in investment and more than 1600 new jobs in Queensland.”
The other MLP projects to progress from the initial assessment stage are the Port of Brisbane’s proposed $100 million Brisbane International Cruise Terminal, and TransUrban Queensland’s Logan Motorway Enhancement Project.
Tourism Minister Kate Jones said the proposal could help turn Brisbane into a must-see tourist destination.
“A development such as this would celebrate the wealth of Queensland’s maritime history and showcase the diversity of our rivers, islands, reefs and ocean environments,” she said.
“More Australians are choosing Queensland than ever before and we are getting record numbers of international visitors.
“Domestic visitors to Brisbane increased by 11% to 5.8 million over the last 12 months. Those visitors spent $3.6 billion during their stay, representing an increase of 12%.
“This proposal will further boost Brisbane’s attractiveness as a tourist destination and help us continue to attract more visitors and more jobs.”
Mr Pitt said the Government will assess the proposal and hear what the community has to say before it gives the development the go-ahead.
What do you think about the proposed development? Would you like to see an aquarium in South Bank? Vote in our poll and have your say in the comments below! UPDATE: This poll has closed, and the results are neck-and-neck. 38.66 per cent of you think the money could be put to better use, while 37.61 per cent of you would love to see an aquarium in South Bank. The remaining 23.73 per cent of voters said they were undecided, and needed to see more information about the proposal.