Rare WWII bunkers unearthed in Brisbane’s CBD


Part of Brisbane’s war history will come alive at the Howard Smith Wharves development site. Five recently discovered air raid shelters are being included in the project.

Grant Hayes reports.

TRANSCRIPT

Lord Mayor Graham Quirk today inspected five Word War Two bunkers set to become part of the new wharf precinct.

Graham Quirk, Lord Mayor: “There’s no room for error in there, hey.”

The historic shelters were discovered as part of the $110 million transformation of the area.

The Lord Mayor says the find is a reminder of Brisbane’s proud war history.

Graham Quirk, Lord Mayor: “Brisbane and our war history is extremely important. We were a pivotal city within the war effort for the allied forces and the protection of the freedom we enjoy today.”

The structures have received ‘heritage hero’ status by the National Trust of Australia.

They’ll be made available for public visits in an attempt to encourage tourism.

Amanda Cooper, Infrastructure Chair: “This is the first time in Queensland a site has been awarded this status and I think it really exemplifies what this project is all about.”

Only a handful of the 230 bunkers built across South East Queensland during the war have survived.

Almost all were dismantled or destroyed in the years since.

The bunkers were created in response to the threat of Japanese invasion.

The amount of people in the area and the proximity to the bridge made the area a prime target.

The restoration of other heritage listed-buildings on the site is set to revitalise Brisbane’s river front.

The first stage opens later this year.

Grant Hayes, QUT News.