Brisbane shipyard expansion wins council approval

Brisbane is a major step closer to becoming the Asia Pacific region’s premier superyacht destination and a more strategic location for Defence and commercial vessels after Rivergate Marina and Shipyard gained approval for a $200 million expansion.

Outdoor recreation area render.
Outdoor recreation area.

Brisbane City Council has approved Rivergate’s development application for an expanded maintenance and refit hub based on the Brisbane River, which would be the catalyst for a jobs and economic bonanza for Queensland’s marine and tourism industries.

The proposed expansion of the internationally acclaimed maritime precinct is forecast to dramatically increase superyacht visitation to Australia while also providing vital new capability to service Australian Defence Force and Australian Border Force vessels.

Key elements of the expansion include a $35 million state-of-the-art shiplift capable of lifting vessels of up to 3,000 tonnes and 90 metres, and new hardstand space, sheds and berthing to service multiple large vessels at the same time.

Rivergate will also become a trade centre for excellence with plans for a new five-storey purpose-built facility featuring training rooms, offices, café, world-class crew accommodation and crew recreation facilities.

Captain's lounge and library render.
Captain’s lounge and library.

On completion, the expansion would generate an estimated 2,000 new jobs for marine and tourism sectors, inject close to $1 billion into the Queensland economy each year, and ensure the region’s maritime industry is ready for the 2032 Olympic Games.

Rivergate Director Tom Hill welcomed the development approval, which he said recognised the project’s potential to support a range of industries within Queensland and bolster Australia’s sovereign capability amid increasing global security tensions.

“This approval means our expansion is now shovel ready and just waiting on government funding support to get under way,” he said.

Mr Hill said the project represented a step change for the maritime industry that would make it possible for an estimated 60 additional superyachts to visit Australian waters each year.

“Brisbane is already an ideal location for servicing and repairing superyachts, several classes of Defence vessels and other commercial shipping,” he said.

“This expansion would provide owners and captains of large recreational vessels with the assurance that world-class facilities are available for both routine and unplanned maintenance works while they are cruising in our region.

“It will also fill a much-needed gap in Defence and commercial vessel maintenance on Australia’s east coast, eliminating the current necessity for some vessel classes to be serviced elsewhere in Australia such as Perth or Adelaide due to a lack of lifting capacity.

Crew accommodation room render.
Crew accommodation.

The multi award-winning Rivergate Marina and Shipyard was established in 2006 and is now recognised as one of the top three superyacht shipyards in the world. It is widely respected for its skilled trades, safe environment, and warm hospitality.

Rivergate is a customs clearance marina and offers deep water access on all tides, near-perfect weather for year-round operations, and easy access to capital city services, including the 24-hour Brisbane International Airport only 10 minutes away.

To find out more about Rivergate’s expansion plans, go to

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