There are multiple elements to the project, which includes an artificial inlet on what was previously the Esplanade Reserve that will be connected by 1.5 kilometres of continuous boardwalks, modifications to the surrounding area, including Barrack Square, and nine building sites that will eventually be the home to high-rise hotels, apartments, and office buildings.
When everything is completed, Elizabeth Quay will house 1,700 residential apartments, 150,000 square metres of office space, and 39,000 square metres of retail space.
There will also be a cable car to Kings Park that will service the area, connecting it to the rest of Perth’s public transportation system.
The project was officially started at a ceremony conducted by Planning Minister John Day and Premier Colin Barnett on 26 April 2012.
Elizabeth Quay was officially opened on 29 January 2016 by Day, Barnett, and Lord Mayor of Perth Lisa Scaffidi. With that being said, not all of the buildings have been completed. It is projected that all construction will be complete in the area by 2018.
One of the primary drivers for this development was the desire to reconnect Perth with the Swan River.
The riverside was once a place where citizens gathered for picnics and enjoyed the water recreation opportunities provided by the river.
There were wonderful public baths along the water’s edge that made it easy for citizens to enjoy the water and clean themselves and change right there on the shore. However, as the city grew, new developments continued to cut the city off from the river, ultimately culminating in the construction of Riverside Drive in 1940.
After Riverside Drive was build, the Perth Central Business District started a trend of east-west development.
Elizabeth Quay brings Perth back to the riverside and along with a series of other developments, starts a north-south extension of the CBD.
In addition to reconnecting Perth with the Swan River and providing Perth with much needed additional hotel space, office space, and housing, it will also be a centre for arts and entertainment.
The area is already home to some unique and well-regarded pieces of public art, including the Spanda and First Contact sculptures.
It is also the home to a number of music events, some of which are even free for visitors to enjoy.
While Elizabeth Quay may not be completed just yet, it is already quickly becoming a welcome addition to the ever-growing Perth CBD.
Visitors to Perth should certainly make their way to the Swan River and walk along the wonderful network of boardwalks in the area, taking in the wonderful entertainment, shopping, and eating attractions that are just becoming more abundant and plentiful by the day.
Elizabeth Quay has certainly achieved its goal of reconnecting the city with the wonderful Swan River.