Townsville Marine Precinct

What is the Townsville Marine Precinct?

The creation of a commercial marine facility on the northern bank of the Ross River mouth is hoped to relieve some of the developmental pressure suffered by the rapidly expanding region.

Townsville’s period of rapid growth is reflected in the increased numbers of recreational, industrial and port commercial traffic in the South Townsville area. The Port of Townsville is considering the 34ha Townsville Marine Precinct as part of a long-term solution.

If it goes ahead, this dedicated facility on Benwell Road will provide an opportunity to co-locate and consolidate marine-dependent industries while providing best practice environmental management infrastructure. Its development may also result in the region’s existing marine industry being able to enhance its ability to take advantage of future industry growth prospects.

The new purpose-built facility will provide an opportunity to co-locate similar marine-dependent industries in one place.

Click here to view the Townsville Marine Precinct Concept Layout (1.8 mb) shown above.

View of Townsville City from the Port Port of Townsville

How long has the proposed precinct been on the agenda?

Investigations into the proposed marine precinct date back to 1977, however the construction of the Townsville Port Access Road by the Department of Main Roads, a route designed to take heavy vehicles away from residential areas on a more direct path to the Port, has provided an additional driver for the project to progress. The Townsville Port Access Road is expected to be finished in early 2012 and includes a low-level fixed bridge across Ross River.

Before the new road is complete, marine based businesses up-stream of the bridge will have the opportunity to relocate to the new marine precinct.

What are the main aims of the proposed precinct?

Key project objectives for the Townsville Marine Precinct include:

Who is the driver of the project ?

The Port of Townsville Ltd is responsible for gaining all relevant approvals necessary to facilitate the development of this project.

The Initial Advice Statement (IAS) has been completed and provides relevant information about the project to the public and government agencies at the local, state and national level.

What about the environmental impacts ?

Federal and state laws stipulate that an Environmental Impact Study (EIS) must accompany proposals for major projects and programs that are likely to have an impact on the surrounding area.

International professional services company GHD Ltd has been contracted by the Port of Townsville to undertake an EIS for the Townsville Marine Precinct project.

The objective of the EIS is to identify potential environmental impacts of the project and propose measures to avoid or manage these areas.

The EIS will include:

Part of the process means the following tests and surveys will need to be completed:

The EIS includes a range of other assessments including greenhouse gas assessments, traffic assessments, noise and air impact assessments as well as an economic impact assessment.

Mangroves growing on the mudflats (South Townsville)


On 22 August 2008, the Coordinator-General declared the project to be a ‘significant project’ for which an environmental impact statement (EIS) is required in accordance with Part 4 of the State Development and Public Works Organisation Act 1971 (Qld).

The Department of Infrastructure and Planning is managing the EIS process on behalf of the Coordinator-General.

On 3 November 2008, project was determined to be a 'controlled action' by the Commonwealth Minister for the Department of Environment, Heritage and the Arts under the Commonwealth Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 with respect to potential impacts on matters of national environmental significance.

What about the impact on people?

The objectives of the community consultation process are to:

A number of community involvement techniques will enable the consultation objectives to be achieved and will facilitate the involvement of a range of different stakeholder and special interest groups.

The EIS is due for completion in mid 2009 and will be released for public comment at this time.

What stage is the marine precinct project at now?

How can the local community get involved ?

A community consultation program has been developed which includes the provision of project information to residents, stakeholders and businesses through door-knocking, letterbox drop, stakeholder group meetings and public displays. Opportunities for involvement will be widely publicised and will be flexible to allow the needs of the community to be accommodated as the EIS progresses.

Have your say?

Make a submission regarding the Townsville Marine Precinct:

For example:Have the designers of the Townsville Marine Precinct considered public access to the facility? Type your comments or questions in the space below or you can send us your comments in a separate document via email to

Your Comments or Questions:

Please provide your email address so that we can respond to your comments or questions.

Keep Informed

To be kept informed of progess and be sent updates and other infromation when it becomes available, please provide your email address:

Fact Sheets

Fact Sheet No. 1 - Townsville Marine Precinct (175Kb )

Fact Sheet No. 2 - Environmental Impact Study ( 90Kb )

Fact Sheet No. 3 - Benwell Road Beach (0.6Mb )

Fact Sheet No. 4 - Marine Studies (1.1Mb )

Contact Information

There are several ways to provide comment to the project's consultants or find out more information:

Phone: 1300 438 050
Fax: (07) 4772 6335

Mail : PO Box 2447 Townsville Qld 4810

Background information on the Port of Townsville is available from:

Environment & Behaviour Consultants - 3 Victoria Street - Townsville - 4810 Qld - AUSTRALIA - Tel (61) 07 47 722 544

Design by Adam Robinson