The Brisbane Transit Centre will be demolished as part of plans for an underground Cross River Rail station and a new live-entertainment precinct.

"The Brisbane Transit Centre is well past its prime,” Queensland deputy premier and treasurer Jackie Trad said in a statement, “but by 2025 this end of the city will be totally transformed.”

Trad announced the news yesterday, saying the $5.4 billion Cross River Rail project would transform the western gateway into Brisbane and allow for the construction of AEG Ogden’s proposed Brisbane Live development.

Early works are slated to start next year, with the Transit Centre and Hotel Jen to be demolished in late 2020. Roma Street train and bus stations will continue to operate throughout the construction period.

“When complete the new station is expected to be used by more than 230,000 commuters every week, the equivalent of over four capacity crowds at Suncorp Stadium,” Trad said.

“This is a project that will transform the southeast by creating a turn-up-and-go transport system for the whole of South East Queensland – taking thousands of cars off our roads and getting people home and to work faster.

STAY IN THE KNOW
Get our pick of the best news, features and events delivered twice a week

“Without it, we won’t be able to build the future vital connections to our SEQ region.”

Labor has long viewed Cross River Rail as an essential component of the Brisbane Live development. The proposal from AEG Ogden includes an 18,000-seat arena modelled on AEG’s own LA Live near downtown Los Angeles (which includes the 20,000 seat Staples Center). The entire project aims to transform a part of the city Trad has previously described as “tired” and “old” into an entertainment, lifestyle and sports hub, with the Brisbane Live arena as the centrepiece.

“Planning for Brisbane Live is well underway with representatives from AEG Worldwide visiting Brisbane from their Los Angeles base this week to meet with the local power brokers pulling the Brisbane Live business case together,” Trad said.

Brisbane doesn’t lack for quality live-music venues. The Tivoli, The Triffid and The Zoo provide plenty of options for mid-tier touring artists. But Brisbane Live would likely bring big-ticket performances back into the city after years of locals commuting out to Boondall’s Brisbane Entertainment Centre.