Rockhampton CBD Redevelopment

Design Feature
Project Type

The cultural, social, tourism and business potential of Rockhampton’s CBD prompted the Rockhampton Regional Council to invest in the revitalisation of the city centre. With a focus on job creation, investment attraction and place creation, the CBD Redevelopment Framework delivers the long-term strategic framework for the revitalisation of the CBD. This work (in parallel with waterfront and streetscape upgrades to the CBD’s Riverside Precinct) aims to position the city centre as the vibrant and dynamic heart of the region.  

A unified urban environment

The redevelopment of the Rockhampton Riverside precinct is guided by the CBD Redevelopment Framework. Both streams of work have been informed by the significant participation of the community, local businesses, council’s internal teams and councillors themselves. The focus of all activity has been to bring the iconic history of the city to life, encourage CBD living and housing diversity, creating unique and memorable destinations and attracting a dynamic mix of businesses to stimulate growth, jobs and tourism.  

CBD property owners and business operators were encouraged to express their views and opinions through facilitated workshops, stakeholder meetings and taskforce groups. This led to the development of a community-led action plan to transform the Rockhampton CBD into a vibrant economic, cultural and social centre.  

To ensure that any person who resides in the Rockhampton region could participate in the revitalisation process, a survey was distributed to residents where they could provide feedback to the council on their vision for the city centre. 

The 791 survey respondents expressed that they would like to see: 

  • clean, attractive streets and plenty of green spaces 
  • areas for more events / markets / festivals 
  • riverfront dining 
  • interactive play spaces 
  • connectivity to the river. 

The resulting Riverside Revitalisation has transformed the banks of Rockhampton's iconic Fitzroy River into a mixed-use recreational hub for businesses, locals and visitors.  

The riverfront is the most important of Rockhampton’s public open space assets. With iconic heritage buildings of national significance along Quay Street directly overlooking the riverfront, the design rationale has been to unite the city to the river and celebrate the unique community and heritage of the place in a contemporary and dynamic way.  

The design creates a riverfront that is contemporary and coherent with a clear and strong sense of place. An array of memorable destinations and attractors stimulate both day and night-time activation. Activation nodes and public art encourage movement and are connected by a generous high-quality riverwalk and pathway system that ties back into the upper embankment, namely Quay Street and the wider CBD. This approach creates a safe, visually cohesive and high-quality environment that amplifies the social, cultural and built form heritage values of the location.  

Project Team 

  • Lead Consultant: Urbis (landscape architecture, urban design, placemaking, community engagement, heritage planning, town planning, economic advisory).  
  • Other consultants: Woods Bagot (architecture),  
  • Calibre Consulting (traffic engineering) 
  • Vision Hospitality (food service and beverage consultant) 
  • McMurtrie (civil engineering) 
  • Kehoe Myers (structural engineering) 
  • Butler Partners (quantity surveyor) 
  • Anderson Consulting (electrical, mechanical and fire engineering) 
  • Edwards Irrigation, Urban Art Projects (public art and curatorial consultant) 
  • Street and Garden (street furniture) 
  • Dot-dash (signage) 
  • Techno Water Designs (waterpark design specialist) 
  • AUS Safe (safety consultant) 
  • WSP (lift specialist) 
  • Playground (urban play). 

Project Cost 

  • Approximately $36 million  

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