Queensland won significantly in last month’s Federal Budget, notes Joseph Grasso, Director Raine & Horne Commercial Southside.
The highlights included $3.3 billion for continued upgrades to the Bruce Highway and $1 billion for M1 upgrades between Varsity Lakes and Tugun, and between Eight Mile Plains and Daisy Hill. The Beerburrum to Nambour Rail Upgrade will receive $390 million, and the Brisbane Metro received a $300 million injection.
“Brisbane is well-placed economically to forge ahead, and three major infrastructure projects are critical to this outlook,” says Joseph.
In addition to the recent announcements, Joseph believes the second runway at Brisbane Airport will jet-propel commercial markets. He explains, “The extra runway is probably two years from starting and will allow more direct international flights from Brisbane and reduce the numbers of passengers who need to fly to Sydney and Melbourne to grab international connecting flights.
“This will increase the numbers of international visitors into Brisbane, which will have flow-on effects to the economy, the business sector and consequently the city’s commercial property markets.”
The new Brisbane Casino due to open in 2022 will also impact commercial property. Built as part of the Queen’s Wharf Brisbane Priority Development Area, the new casino will rival what Crowne Casino did for Melbourne, contends Joseph. “It will link to Southbank and will provide international hotels, world-class restaurants and cafes and other public amenities that are sure to put Brisbane on the map for more international visitors.”
Another project of note, says Joseph, is the Cross-River Rail, a 10.2km rail line between Dutton Park and Bowen Hills. This project includes a 5.9km twin tunnel under the Brisbane River and Brisbane CBD. Cross River Rail will integrate with proposed Brisbane Metro services and will cost the Queensland Government $2.8 billion and an additional $2.6 billion over subsequent years.
The $2 billion transformation of the old Roma Street railyards to a ‘Brisbane Live’ ultra-entertainment precinct, will deliver international kudos and business to Brisbane too, believes Joseph. At the same time, Queensland’s population hit 5 million in May. “Infrastructure investment and population growth will combine to drive demand for commercial property in Brisbane.”