LOOKING AHEAD: The central business district at Maroochydore is planned to be the heart of the Sunshine Coast.
LOOKING AHEAD: The central business district at Maroochydore is planned to be the heart of the Sunshine Coast.

Essential to get new Maroochydore CBD fundamentals right

THE new Maroochydore CBD will be a vibrant business location built on connectivity and walkability. It's at the heart of the enterprise corridor that stretches from the Sunshine Coast Airport to Caloundra South so it is incredibly important in terms of infrastructure and investment.

Getting the fundamentals right is the responsibility of the SunCentral team and CEO John Knaggs is upbeat about the progress that has been made in 2016. This is right from when Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk and Mayor Mark Jamieson turned the first sod on the 53ha site on February 11.

People know there's something going on behind the fence, but at the moment you can really only see it from the air.

"There's a lot happening,'' Mr Knaggs said. "The bulk earthworks have finished on Stage 1A.

"This is the core of the CBD and includes everything north of The Corso which is the spine of the development. It has involved the relocation of the 11kv high voltage power that traversed the site.''


Carolyn Tucker

The city grid street pattern is starting to take shape while service providers such as Unitywater and Energex are starting to re-lay their infrastructure on edges of the site.

The CBD will be the first development in Australia to incorporate an underground automated waste collection system. Wheelie bins will be obsolete.

The precinct is being designed to provide prime commercial office space, exclusive retail, entertainment, convention and exhibition facilities, a premium hotel and recreational spaces.

Potential for light rail is being allocated to connect Caloundra, Kawana and Mooloolaba with Maroochydore.

Connection to the newly designated Sunshine Coast International Airport and its $340million expansion to be completed by late 2020, will be 10 minutes by road.

In addition to the airport expansion, the total construction cost of the CBD over the 20-year life of the project is estimated to be $2.1b.

"The amenity of the beach and river sell themselves but the airport and business value of the CBD is the future of the Sunshine Coast. In terms of employment opportunities as well as hospitality.

"The enterprise corridor is where 80% of jobs will be created while the new CBD is expected to create more than 15,000 jobs by 2025.

"These will be long-term jobs that add depth and strength to the economy.''

Mr Knaggs said there has been a very solid response to the CBD since the initial launch to national and international markets in June.

"We are in a reasonable position to take forward some detailed contract negotiations into 2017.

"It's also exciting to see the number of start-ups expressing interest in the area.''

At his state of the region address on Friday, Sunshine Coast mayor Mark Jamieson said submissions proposing commercial and mixed use projects worth $400million in construction cost alone had already been lodged for consideration and due diligence.

"Our council looks forward to seeing these and other proposals for the CBD develop to contract and announcement stage in 2017,'' he said.

The opening of the $1.8 billion Sunshine Coast University Public Hospital next year, like the university and the new CBD, will serve a catchment from northern Brisbane as well as north to Gympie and beyond - a population catchment of over 1.3million people.

"This is really a maturity issue and the story of the Sunshine Coast coming of age," Mr Knaggs said.

"We've undergone a lengthy period of planning for a range of major projects, including the Maroochydore city centre development, to ensure we have the infrastructure and employment opportunities to cater for future growth.

"The Sunshine Coast is about to reap the rewards as those projects start to come to fruition.

"It's no surprise that we're now attracting national and international attention, and the region has been identified as an investment hotspot by a range of property experts."



Smart City technology

  • A high-speed, high-quality fibre optic network which will be built into the new city's underground infrastructure.
  • The network will allow free Smart City Wi-Fi throughout the city's 'public realm' - streets, parks and plazas.
  • Smart signage will provide live travel information to pedestrians throughout the CBD.
  • Smartphone apps will allow drivers to quickly find the nearest car parking space.
  • Energy-saving LED lights will be installed throughout the CBD.


Automated underground waste collection

  • The CBD will be the first development in Australia to incorporate an underground automated waste collection system
  • Wheelie bins will be obsolete as waste will instead be sucked from commercial buildings and apartments at up to 70kmh through a 6.5km system of underground vacuum pipes.

Clean energy

  • The electricity consumption of the CBD's council-owned infrastructure, including street lights, community buildings, libraries etc will be completely offset by green energy produced at Australia's fifth-largest solar farm under construction at Valdora.

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