What is Queensland’s 2nd biggest employment region?

For property investors, proximity to employment is a key factor to consider when looking for the best area to buy in Brisbane, Queensland or indeed, any part of Australia. Just outside of the Brisbane CBD is Queensland’s second largest employment precinct (after the CBD itself), that’s also the fastest growing trade and industry region in the country – the Australia Trade Coast.

Key points:

  • 6km from Brisbane CBD, is made up of the Airport, Port & surrounding businesses
  • Fastest growing trade & industry region in Australia
  • 2nd largest employment hub in QLD
  • Home to around 1,500 businesses & over 60,000 employees
  • Forecast to employ more than 110,000 people by 2026

Australia Trade Coast: fast facts

The Australia Trade Coast (ATC) is a collaboration between some of the biggest influencers in Queensland – the Brisbane Airport Corporation, Brisbane City Council, Port of Brisbane Pty Ltd and the Queensland State Government. Back in 1999, they recognised the unique opportunity that the area had to be an economic driver and came together to strategically plan and collaborate on development projects.

The ATC is about 6km to the east of the CBD and is made up of the Brisbane Airport, Port and a large number of surrounding commercial and industrial precincts and businesses. In total, there are over 1,500 businesses in industries such as aviation, manufacturing, logistics and construction – including big names like Qantas, Virgin, Australia Post Logistics, Fedex, Woolworths and Bluescope Steel.

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The ATC’s competitive advantage

In terms of trade, the ATC is in a unique spot. It’s close to the CBD and well connected to the rest of the region through Brisbane’s “Linkt” Network of motorways and tunnels. Over 40 shipping lines service the Port, 33 international and domestic airlines fly through the Airport, and both are close to world-class road and rail infrastructure that allows freight to easily come in and out before being distributed all across the state. It’s also 5 sailing days closer to Asia than the ports of Sydney and Melbourne which makes it preferred by importers.

Key economic driver

The ATC is a major driver of the Queensland economy – the Government recently recognised it as Queensland’s most significant trade and industry precinct. Over 60,000 people are employed in the area, a figure that is only set to rise over the next 5 years with 3 major planned projects: a new cruise terminal, airport expansion and a luxury auto mall. With projects like these, it’s expected that the area will grow to 110,000 jobs by 2026, with a forecast value to the Queensland economy of $9.4 billion.

“The ATC is already a major employment hub in Queensland, and we’ll only see this grow in coming years,” said Ironfish Head of Property and Research, William Mitchell. “The three major projects underway are expected to also have a significant flow-on effect for the tourism industry, and the local property markets surrounding the ATC precinct.”

Project 1: Airport Expansion

By mid 2020, the Brisbane airport is scheduled to unveil its new $1.35 billion expansion – the largest aviation construction project in Australia. By adding a 2nd runway, Brisbane airport will have the same capacity as Hong Kong or Singapore Airports, with the potential to cater for 49 million passengers every year by 2035. This is a significant increase from the 23.4 million passengers that pass through the airport annually today, and will allow Brisbane to benefit from an increase in business and tourism visits to Brisbane by hundreds of thousands every week. It will create roughly 26,000 new jobs by 2034.

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Project 2: International Cruise Terminal

Queensland’s first dedicated mega cruise ship terminal is also in the works for the Australian Trade Coast. The $158 million International Cruise Terminal will be able to accommodate the world’s largest cruise ships, and give businesses access to tourists from all over the world as they come to Brisbane – an exciting prospect for the local tourism industry.

“This new terminal will help secure our slice of the market by providing a dedicated facility to accommodate larger ships that are unable to dock at Portside,” said Minister for State Development, Manufacturing, Infrastructure and Planning, Cameron Dick about the project.

“This vital infrastructure – Queensland’s first dedicated mega cruise ship terminal – will be a fitting gateway for arriving visitors as they step on to Queensland soil and for those who can now depart in the mega cruise ships directly from Brisbane.”

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Project 3: Luxury Auto Mall

Construction has already begun on the new $300 million Auto Mall within the Australian Trade Coast precinct, where customers can land at the airport, and take a test drive at one of the many luxury car dealerships (like BMW, Porsche, Lexus and Volkswagen) on a Mark Skaife designed race track. Also in the precinct is a 4WD track, conference facilities, a hotel and dining precinct. Stage 1 is due to open in 2021, and create 300 jobs during construction.

A growth spot for the Brisbane property market

Here at Ironfish, our aim is to position our investors in the right place, at the right time – so we’ve always got an eye out for future growth areas in the Brisbane property market. Given the upcoming projects at the ATC and employment opportunities they will bring, we’re confident that demand for quality properties in the area will increase in the next few years.

To take advantage of this growth area, talk to one of our Ironfish strategists about what opportunities are currently available near the Australian Trade Coast.

All properties we recommend to our customers are subject to a rigorous selection and due diligence process by our Property & Research team.

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