Cox Architecture design the new stadium for Townsville in North Queensland. Its roof should resemble the distinctive leaf of a pandanus plant.
As expected, this week the Queensland Government selected how Townsville’s next stadium will look like. The 25,000-capacity venue (with option to add 5,000 in the future) will serve as the main sports event venue for the entire North Queensland region, thus the temporary name North Queensland Stadium. In practice crucial tenancy will be held by rugby side Cowboys of the National Rugby League (NRL).
The building is to be placed on largely abandoned industrial site at Monkey Island, just south of the city’s strict centre. It will be connected with more populated west bank of Ross Creek with three existing bridges and a two new pedestrian bridges.
Cox Architecture’s concept was selected for implementation. The signature feature is semi-open roof resembling the leaf of a pandanus tree. It will cover 80% of spectators and would withstand cyclonic winds if necessary.
Double-tiered stands on three sides and a very modest north end makes the stadium open towards the city centre. This way fans will be able to see the city while inside.
A separate grassed terrace outside the stadium and beautifully landscaped surroundings might become a new meeting point on a more frequent basis, also offering great view of the city.
According to the time frame set out by Queensland Government, contractor should be selected in mid-2017 and work on site could begin in late 2017. Actual stadium construction will follow enabling works early into 2018 and the entire stadium is expected to open in early 2020, in time for the 2020 NRL season.
The $250-million project will be the first to be delivered under the federal government’s City Deals scheme. It is jointly funded by the Queensland Government ($140 million), Australian Government ($100 million) and Townsville City Council (land and enabling infrastructure) and is supported by the National Rugby League ($10 million).