Four designers vie for North Queensland Stadium gig

Four design companies have been shortlisted from a field of 17 international and national firms to tender for the principal consultant role for the A$250m North Queensland Stadium.


Minister for State Development, Dr Anthony Lynham, said the shortlisted companies would be invited to submit a concept design and a site master plan as part of the design tender.


Dr Lynham confirmed:

BVN Architecture, Cox Architecture, Hassell and Populous were shortlisted to develop a concept design for the North Queensland Stadium project.

The four companies have all demonstrated a proven track record in major sports stadiums.

Most importantly, they have included more than 20 local companies collectively and local industry participation strategies as part of their submissions.


Locals involved include Tippett Schrock Architects, 9Point9 Architects, Architects North, i4 Architecture and Stephen De Jersey Architect, as well as companies with local offices – Northern Consulting, Flanagan Consulting, SMEC and Arup.


The successful design tenderer will be appointed by the end of the year. The appointed team will further develop their concept design, in preparation for release of the managing contractor tender in early 2017.


Minister assisting the Premier on North Queensland and stadium champion, Coralee O’Rourke, said the project would revitalise the Townsville CBD, less than a kilometre from the site, and boost the North Queensland economy.


Ms O’Rourke said:

The Queensland Government is making the biggest contribution with up to $140 million for the project and we are pleased all of the other parties are working with us to make this North Queensland dream a reality.

The stadium project will create jobs and develop our skilled workforce during both the design and construction stages.


Member for Townsville, Scott Stewart, said developing the design for the stadium was just the start of the process. He added:

There will be plenty more opportunities for local businesses once the managing contractor is appointed next year and trade packages start rolling out.


Member for Thuringowa, Aaron Harper, has urged local businesses to register their capabilities at


Mr Harper added:

My message to businesses across the region is to put in an expression of interest for the work packages, and get along to the Department of State Development workshops.

Once you register, tour information can be made available to major contractors as part of the future managing contractor bidding process.


As of 9am yesterday (EDS: Monday), more than 250 companies have lodged expressions of interest for future work packages including almost 80 with offices in North Queensland.


About the project

The 25,000-seat stadium will become a new home for the North Queensland Toyota Cowboys. The team’s current home, the Willows Sports Complex (also referred to as 1300Smiles Stadium), is a converted greyhound racing track located 15km from Townsville CBD.


The Queensland government has committed A$140m to support the development and the federal government has put forward A$100m through the Smart Cities Plan. The National Rugby League (NRL) and the North Queensland Toyota Cowboys have also pledged an upfront payment of A$10m. And Townsville City Council is contributing the land on which the stadium will be built on.


North Queensland Stadium is being jointly developed by the Queensland government, federal government and Townsville City Council.


Background on the four shortlisted practices:

BVN Architecture was founded in Toowoomba 90 years ago and is one of Australia’s most awarded architectural practices, with a strong history in sports architecture. Their recent projects include Carrara Sports and Leisure Centre on the Gold Coast for the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games and the State Netball Centre in Brisbane.


Cox Architecture has been at the forefront of sport architecture design for more than 40 years. Their recent projects include the Queensland State Velodrome in Brisbane and the Gold Coast Aquatic Centre for the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games.


Hassell Ltd is a leading design practice and highly awarded for its work around Australia. They are currently the principal consultant for the new 60,000-seat Perth Stadium.


Populous has their Asia Pacific headquarters in Brisbane and has been designing award-winning rectangular stadia for 30 years. Their projects include the Gold Coast’s Cbus Super Stadium and the Forsyth Barr Stadium in New Zealand.



Image: Indicative design for a new stadium in Townsville by Cox Architecture, produced for a 2013 feasibility study by KPMG. Courtesy: Townsville Enterprise.




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