North Queensland Stadium project picks up pace

The A$250m North Queensland Stadium (NQ Stadium) will hit another milestone next week with a development application going to Townsville City Council.


Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said the lodgement of a development application for the city-changing project would be a key next step towards construction commencing.


Premier Palaszczuk said at Friday’s press conference:

My Government has ensured this job generating project becomes a reality, by bringing the stadium through the planning stages to the point where we are at today.


In the latest progress on this project, the Department of State Development will lodge a Development Application next week with the Townsville City Council for the 25,000-seat stadium.


State Development Minister, Dr Anthony Lynham, said getting the project to this stage was a clear demonstration of the Palaszczuk Government’s commitment to Townsville:

Managing contractor, Watpac is now captaining the team that will bring home this project for the North – right on time for the start of the 2020 NRL season.


Minister Assisting the Premier on North Queensland and Member for Mundingburra, Coralee O’Rourke, said the project was a boon for local jobs, with 80 per cent of the stadium team expected to be local:

For the Palaszczuk Government, local jobs, local business opportunities and a strong local presence was the deal maker in choosing Watpac as managing contractor.


As part of their winning tender submission Watpac outlined a plan for more than 80 per cent of hours spent building the stadium to be by locals, and at least 80 per cent of the value of the project to be spent on local subcontractors and suppliers.


Member for Townsville, Scott Stewart, said more than 2,000 people are expected to be engaged in delivery of the stadium, a significant jobs boost to the Townsville region:

Of these jobs, Watpac has committed to targeting 6.6 per cent of the workforce to be Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.


Watpac* has been an employer and part of the Townsville community for nearly 20 years and also have outstanding stadium construction experience, including Suncorp Stadium in Brisbane.


Member for Thuringowa, Aaron Harper, said Watpac would draw upon their knowledge of the Townsville construction industry to maximise opportunities for local contractors:

This really will be a stadium be built by the people of North Queensland for the people of North Queensland. From next month, Watpac will participate in ongoing industry events to engage with local contractors and business, starting with the Government’s quarterly Townsville Industry Breakfast on June 6. I urge local businesses to take advantage of these events, and ensure they sign up to the stadium newsletter for all the latest updates.


Dr Lynham said he was now looking forward to the next milestone for the North Queensland Stadium, when the project breaks ground later this year:

The Palaszczuk Government is determined to see this stadium become a reality for Townsville and North Queensland, and I am sure we can look forward to further investment in this project in the upcoming state budget.


For more information on the North Queensland Stadium, or to sign up for newsletter updates, visit:


*Watpac will use the Queensland Government’s ICN Gateway at: as a source for tender registrations. Currently, 443 companies have registered their interest for work packages through the ICN Gateway, with 182 or 41 per cent, based in North Queensland.


The North Queensland Stadium is a joint project of the Australian Government, Queensland Government and Townsville City Council and is supported by both the National Rugby League (NRL) and the North Queensland Cowboys. The North Queensland Stadium forms part of the Townsville City Deal signed in 2016.


Watpac will deliver the two-stage design and construct contract, providing vital job and training opportunities for the Townsville region.

Watch the concept designs video for the new A$250m North Queensland Stadium on YouTube at:


Images of North Queensland Stadium, courtesy: Townsville City Council


The Project

The State Development department is leading the delivery of the North Queensland Stadium Project, which is expected to support up to 750 jobs throughout the design and construction stages.


With a total project budget of A$250m, a centrally-located 25,000-seat best-practice regional stadium will be built in Townsville, in time for the start of the 2020 NRL season.


The stadium project will provide a catalyst for urban regeneration in Townsville, attract further investment into the region and support jobs growth.



North Queensland Stadium is a joint project of the Queensland Government ($140m), Australian Government ($100m) and Townsville City Council (land and enabling infrastructure) and is supported by the National Rugby League ($10m).


The Stadium forms part of the Townsville City Deal signed in December 2016.



The North Queensland Stadium site will be located within the Townsville City Waterfront Priority Development Area adjacent to the Townsville Central Business District, between Ross Creek and Saunders Street.


The best-practice regional stadium will include state-of-the-art corporate facilities, permanent stands, permanent concessions and modern amenities throughout.


Overall planning of the site will also make allowance for the potential integration of an entertainment centre at a future date.


Proximity to CBD
to CBD
Proximity to CBD
Proximity to CBD
Proximity to CBD
Proximity to CBD
<1km 25,000 seating with potential to expand to 30,000 capacity in the future 80% Well serviced by CBD public transport routes
  • State-of-the-art corporate facilities including a Field Club
  • Permanent stands including premium seating
  • Permanent food and drink concessions and amenities throughout


Next Steps

The stadium is to be completed in time for the start of the 2020 NRL season. The next steps include:


Item Timeframe
Request for tenders issued to shortlisted principal consultants, audit programmers and quantity surveyors Oct 2016
Appointment of a Principal Consultant, Audit Programmer and Quantity Surveyor 19 Dec 2016
Expressions of Interest for a Managing Contractor 14 Dec 2016 – 18 Jan 2017
Managing Contractor EOI evaluation period February 2017
Request for tenders issued to shortlisted managing contractors February 2017
Appointment of a Managing Contractor April 2017
Letting of work packages commences Mid – late 2017
Commencement of early works on site Mid – late 2017
Commencement of the stadium build Early 2018
Stadium completion Early 2020


Project Team

Townsville architects 9Point9 are part of a Cox Architecture-led team chosen to deliver a Pandanus tree-inspired design for the A$250m North Queensland Stadium.


Acting Premier Curtis Pitt unveiled the winning design concept back in December, with the winning design team and Federal Cities Minister Angus Taylor and Townsville City Council Mayor Jenny Hill.


Cox’s design team incorporates a number of specialist consultancies with Townsville offices, including:

  • 9point9 Architects
  • Ashburner Francis (mechanical and electrical)
  • Arup (structural, civil, traffic and transport, Environmentally Sustainable Design/ESD specialists, acoustics)
  • Parker Hydraulics
  • RPS (landscaping and surveying)
  • Douglas Partners (geotechnical)
  • Cyclone Testing Station at James Cook University (specialist wind engineering)

#SportsVenueBusiness – keeping you in the know!

Share This Article

This website uses cookies and asks your personal data to enhance your browsing experience.