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WORK will begin within weeks on building the multi-billion Queen’s Wharf development set to transform the Brisbane cityscape.

Australian-based global construction giant Multiplex has been awarded preferred contractor status for the major components of the $3.6 billion tourism precinct in the CBD.

It will include the main integrated casino resort building with its eye-catching arc-shaped facade overlooking the Brisbane River and the iconic 100m-high Sky Deck with 360-degree views of the city.

The contract also covers three high-rise towers to house luxury hotels, eventually providing more than 1000 rooms plus dining and retail facilities, and an apartment block.

The building fit-outs will be done later under separate contracts. “Multiplex will build five levels of basement carpark, the resort back-of-house facilities including kitchen, laundry, staff cafeteria, amenities and central energy plant,” said Simon Crooks, project director with the Destination Brisbane Consortium (DBC) behind Queen’s Wharf.

“It’s a massive contract that will include 370,000sq m of floor area and 105,000sq m of energy-efficient glazed facade.

“We are confident that Multiplex will do a great job delivering what will become a major tourism drawcard to Queensland and a place the city’s locals will embrace,” Mr Crooks said.

The contract, which has to be signed off by the State Government, is understood to be worth about $1 billion.

Multiplex got the nod ahead of the other short-listed candidate, Hutchinson Builders.

Work is due to start mid-year, reaching the level of George St by late next year with the first stage expected to be complete in late 2022.

Up to 2000 workers will be employed at the peak of construction.

Queen’s Wharf, covering a fifth of the CBD, is the biggest tourist development in the state’s history, expected to increase visitor numbers to Queensland by 1.4 million a year and raise tourists’ spending by $1.7 billion.

Once operational, the precinct will employ 8000 people.

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk welcomed the “major milestone”.

“Our priority is jobs and this project provides thousands – in construction and in operating this city’s changing development,” she said.

“And it flows through the entire economy with demand for goods and services for decades to come.”

Project leader Simon Crooks beside the giant hole created for the Queen’s Wharf development. Picture: Liam Kidston.

Tourism Industry Development Minister Kate Jones said Queen’s Wharf would change the face of Brisbane and create jobs.

“This is great news for Queensland’s construction industry and a boon for Brisbane because we know when our construction industry is booming, so is our economy,” Ms Jones said.

Multiplex regional managing director Graham Cottam said: “The Queen’s Wharf development is undoubtedly one of the state’s most important and nationally-significant projects, and we are of course thrilled to be given the responsibility to bring DBC’s vision to fruition.”

The firm is responsible for some of Queensland’s most recognisable buildings including the Hilton Gold Coast hotel, Riparian Plaza at Eagle St in Brisbane and the State Government’s 1 William St “Tower of Power” adjacent to Queen’s Wharf.

Its projects also include the new W Hotel and the under-construction The One residential tower in the Brisbane Quarter.

The Destination Brisbane Consortium partners are casino owner-operator The Star Entertainment Group, Hong Kong-based consumer and hospitality investment company Cow Tai Fook Enterprises and property and Australasian hotel developers, Far East Consortium.

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