Streamlining street closures for events, investigating more pedestrian crossings and facilitating the conversion of buildings from commercial to residential form part of the Schrinner Council’s blueprint for reviving Brisbane’s city centre.
Lord Mayor Adrian Schrinner said Brisbane’s CBD had been hit hard during the COVID-19 pandemic and the Brisbane City Centre Master Plan detailed a raft of measures that would directly address these issues over the short and long term.
“Our city centre is critical to the health of the Brisbane economy so ensuring it recovers quickly must be a key priority for all levels of government,” Cr Schrinner said.
“We want Brisbane’s city centre to be a vibrant, welcoming place where residents and visitors love to come and where businesses, both big and small, want to be based.
“We also want our CBD to thrive as we journey towards hosting the 2032 Olympic and Paralympic Games because this will be where tens of thousands of people from around the globe visit and then share their stories about Brisbane.”
The City Centre Master Plan Stage 1 details 15 priority actions across five themes – welcoming, connected, animated, beautiful and unlocking potential – which will be the focus of delivery over the next 18 months.
These include actions such as a year-round program of activities and events, activating planned Olympic and Paralympic “live sites” to show major sport matches and cultural events, enhanced public transport, pedestrian and cycling infrastructure and facilitating sub-tropical design of buildings, streets and public spaces to make the city centre greener and cooler.
The supporting initiatives include measures such as using the new official Brisbane App to promote CBD businesses, events and activities, investigating mid-block pedestrian crossings on streets including Mary, Charlotte and Adelaide streets and investigating a “streets for people” program under which streets can be temporarily closed for an event.
Brisbane Civic Cabinet Chair for Economic Development and the Brisbane 2032 Olympic and Paralympic Games Krista Adams said she was confident Brisbane’s CBD would bounce back over time as restrictions lifted but the Master Plan would help fast-track that recovery.
“Initiatives such as beefing up our calendar of activities and allowing streets to be closed for events will help draw people back to the city centre,” she said.
“We’re not prepared to sit back and wait for our city to recover and that’s why we are stepping in with this roadmap to reignite the CBD as a vibrant destination where everybody wants to be.”
Property Council Queensland Executive Director Jen Williams commended the Schrinner Council on the Master Plan, saying now was the time to focus in enlivening Brisbane’s city heart and reminding people why it is such as wonderful place to live, work, study and play.
“As it is not yet clear which of the social trends emerging over the past 18 months will be structural and which are temporary, an interim action plan is needed to help build momentum while life returns to ‘normal’,” she said.
“Earlier this year, the Property Council was delighted to partner with the Schrinner Council and the Brisbane Economic Development Agency to run the Fridays in the City campaign, seeking to increase the number of workers in the city on Fridays.
“This partnership reinforced Lord Mayor Schrinner’s ongoing support of the city centre and the businesses and workplaces who rely on the workers, students and tourists who frequent it.
“The Property Council looks forward to working in partnership with Schrinner Council on the delivery of Stage 1 of the Master Plan, and contributing to the development of a new Master Plan over the coming years.”