Friday, May 23, 2008

French Quarter - New Two Tower Design

From today's Courier Mail

THE designer behind the famous sail-shaped Burj Al Arab luxury hotel in Dubai has won an international competition to design Devine's $1 billion French Quarter precinct in Brisbane.

The design of two towers by Tom Wright of Atkins has been selected from a field of five international architectural firms which were vying for the honour.

Atkins is also the group behind the Trump International Hotel and Tower in Dubai.

Devine managing director David Devine said yesterday now that the concept for the building had been selected planning work would start with an eye to lodging a development application in the next couple of months.

The towers will form the centrepiece of Devine's $1 billion French Quarter, a 6-star hotel and residential development.

It is to built on sites fronting Albert, Margaret and Alice streets which Devine amalgamated throughout last year. Once complete it will feature two towers housing a 6-star hotel, residential apartments, retail and commercial space.

This will all be linked by a Parisian-style cafe and walkway.

Apartments in the development will be priced from $1.5 million. Prices will reach $15 million – the most expensive apartments ever to be marketed in Brisbane.

"This project will be a true coming of age for Brisbane," Mr Devine said.

Expressions of interest for an international operator to run the hotel component of the development is down to a short list with the successful operator expected to be announced soon.

Mr Devine said none of those on the shortlist were currently operating in Brisbane.

It is also the first project by Atkins in Australia.

Mr Wright said he hoped to bring a new level of luxury and sophistication to the Brisbane skyline with the design.

Mr Wright and his team will now be commissioned to work with Devine's local design firm ML Design to develop the final plans before a development application is lodged.

It is hoped construction will start in 2009 and be finished in 2012.

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