Brisbane’s ‘ugly duckling’ to be demolished for new underground station and Populous arena

With an 18,000 seat world-class arena as its centrepiece, the Roma Street precinct will become Queensland’s premier entertainment venue hosting major live concerts and world-class sporting events right in heart of the city
– Jackie Trad

The Brisbane Transit Centre – often cited as the Australian city’s ugliest building – is to be demolished to make way for a metro station and leisure district, dominated by an entertainment area from architects Populous.

The project was confirmed in last week’s Queensland State Budget 2018-9, with deputy premier and treasurer Jackie Trad pledging that “the western gateway to the city will be totally transformed.”

When complete, the new Roma Street Station is expected to be used by more than 230,000 commuters every week. It will be linked with the new Brisbane Live arena, designed by Populous and managed by global entertainment company AEG Ogden, which runs the LA Live arena in Los Angeles and the O2 in London. Its plans for the site include cinemas, restaurants, bars, hotels, and residences. International architecture and design practice The NRA Collaborative created a masterplan for the site in 2016.

“With an 18,000 seat world-class arena as its centrepiece, the Roma Street precinct will become Queensland’s premier entertainment venue hosting major live concerts and world-class sporting events right in the heart of the city,” said Trad.

“Populous are well known in Brisbane, having designed the multi-award winning Suncorp Stadium and international venues including the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.”

Early works will start in 2019, with the Brisbane Transit Centre – described by Trad as the city’s “ugly duckling” – and adjacent Hotel Jen to be demolished in late-2020.

The project is being delivered as part of the wider AUS$5.4bn (US$3.9bn, €3.4bn, £3bn) Cross River Rail development, which will see a new underground rail line and several stations built through central Brisbane.

Populous are known for their high-profile stadiums and arenas, and their recently-completed projects include the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. They are currently developing a striking spherical entertainment venue in London for the Madison Square Garden Company, which is set to “pioneer the next generation of transformative, immersive experiences.”

Brisbane Transit Centre  Populous  Queensland State Budget  Jackie Trad  Roma Street Station  AEG Ogden  Cross River Rail 
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The Brisbane Transit Centre – often cited as the Australian city’s ugliest building – is to be demolished to make way for a metro station and leisure district, dominated by an entertainment area from architects Populous. The project was confirmed in last week’s Queensland State Budget 2018-9, with deputy premier and treasurer Jackie Trad pledging that “the western gateway to the city will be totally transformed.” When complete, the new
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International architecture and design practice The NRA Collaborative masterplanned the Brisbane Live site in 2016, but Populous will deliver the arena / AEG Ogden/Brisbane Live
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