UPDATE: Whats to be included in the Maroochydore CBD town centre ?

As time ticks on, the Maroochydore CBD is beginning to take shape, a number of significant projects are being put forward in the early stages of the SunCentral town centre.

A large new Council building is being planned along with some other major projects from international developers. The Sunshine Coast Council will soon be revealing exactly what will be going on in the 53-hectare site, and this also includes the decisions being made regarding a new 15,000 square-meter city hall which would require a 10,000 square-metre as a key anchor tenant.The new building is expected to be used as a central location for all Sunshine Coast Council staff, particularly throughout the earlier stages of development of the Maroochydore CBD.

There have been multiple reports of the John Holland property group trying to secure at least 6-9 blocks within the new CBD, including the new council building.

According to the Sunshine Coast Daily the State Government is also closing in on securing a position in the CBD for new office buildings, while AVEO retirement villages is believed to be exploring two potential retirement village sites.

To further add to some of the major development sites, the University of the Sunshine Coast is said to be interested in having a presence within the new CBD as well.

SunCentral CEO John Knaggs’ said in a recent investor newsletter that the project was “progressing well” and construction of the first buildings would start in 2018.

“Construction of the first buildings will begin in 2018 and I will soon be able to announce some exciting news about that crucial stage of the project,” he wrote.

Sources have also indicated a high level of interest in the new Sunshine Coast Entertainment, Convention and Exhibition Centre, with a number of groups believed to have shown interest in developing that project. A 4500-seat auditorium is being suggested as the option moving forwards.
At present it’s beings said its unclear how many possible casino developments will be put into the CBD, however there remains a vacant casino licence. This license could however be utilised as part of an integrated development combined with retail, dining and entertainment facilities in the CBD.
It is still early days at this point, but it is great to see some progress moving forwards with some more clarity as to what will be housed in the new SunCentral Project

Bringing Power to the People.

A very exciting moment for the Sunshine Coast as an Australian-first solar farm goes live tomorrow, the electricity generated over one year will be enough to power the equivalent of 5000 homes.

The pioneering project has meant that the Sunshine Coast Council is the first local government to offset 100 per cent of its electricity consumption from a renewable source.

The site was developed by the Sunshine Coast Council at a cost of $50.4m, the site at Valdora just west of Coolum, was designed to deliver massive savings and sends is a clear sign about the area’s commitment to clean energy.

The facility will sell power harvested from it 57,960 solar panels to the grid for the best price it can achieve and buy it back at the cheapest.

Mayor Mark Jamieson said the forward-thinking Sunshine Coast Solar farm would begin feeding electricity into the power grid tomorrow in an exciting day for the region and its residents. The facility will certainly allow council to take ownership of its own electricity supply, assisting in the reduction of already rising power bills and to achieve a massive sustainability milestone.

“All power consumed at all of council’s facilities, including administration buildings, aquatic centres, community and performance venues, as well as holiday parks, libraries, art galleries and sporting facilities, will be offset with energy from a renewable source thanks to this nation-leading project,” Cr Jamison said.

“We are the first council in Australia to build and operate a 15MW utility scale solar farm which will deliver $22 million in savings, after all costs, for our ratepayers over the next 30 years,” he said.

“Our solar farm is the first, and will be the largest, to connect to the electricity grid in southeast Queensland. It is also the first in Australia to operate at 1500 volts DC which enables it to operate more efficiently.”

Such a project has not gone un-noticed, with considerable attention from 15 councils around the country already assessing how they can follow in the Sunshine Coast’s footsteps.

Cr Jamieson said the project had been developed and executed by the council, there was no assistance from the Federal or State governments, which is very different from many other solar farms being developed in Australia.

Energex Asset Manager Northern Steven Lynch congratulated Sunshine Coast Council for its vision and determination to deliver this clean green initiative.

“We have been very pleased to work with the Council to see this project come to reality,” Mr Lynch said. “Energex sees Grid Scale Projects like this as a key part of our low-carbon future.”

Diamond Energy was selected to provide retail electricity services to council. Managing director Tony Sennitt said it was a pleasure working with such a forward-thinking council and to see the ground-breaking project become a reality.


  • The Sunshine Coast is the first Council in Australia to build a utility scale solar farm of 15MW capacity
  • The electricity generated over one year will be enough to power the equivalent of 5000 homes
  • At its peak, the facility will generate 15,000 kilowatts of electricity, which will go straight into the Energex network
  • It is the second largest solar farm built in Queensland, behind Barcaldine Solar farm (20MW), which is not council owned
  • The Sunshine Coast Solar Farm is the largest built in southeast Queensland

Crucial Changes to our Property Market as of July 1st 2017

So with July firmly upon us, a number of legislative changes have commenced. Always a touchy subject but is information we have to know. Coming from across federal, state and local government, four changes concern the current cost of living, three to taxation and two were relate to either superannuation or grant related according to QEAS director Nick Behrens.

The cost of living changes cover a wide basis, firstly the Major Bank Levy on NAB, ANZ, CBA, Westpac and Macquarie and anticipated flow on increases in home and commercial lending rates are now in place. Council rates are set to rise across Queensland with a recorded 2.3% for the Sunshine Coast, Gold Coast 1.8%, Brisbane 2.4% and anywhere from 1.75-3.99% for the remainder of regions in the state. Electricity bills in Regional Queensland are set to rise by 3.3% for households and 4.1% for small businesses, Water and sewerage charges will increase for example by 2.3% in Greater Brisbane (Queensland Urban Utilities) and 3%t in SEQ (Unity Water).

A number of tax changes will also be happening from a 1.5% surcharge to be introduced to absentee payers of land tax on holdings worth $350,000 and above to other land tax payable, however this is only applicable to interstate investment. The ATO are now unfortunately disallowing deductions for travel expenses relating to inspections, maintenance or collecting rent for a residential rental property. Foreign tax residents are now subject to increased capital gains tax withholding rate of 12.5% from 10%, with a reduced Capital Gains Tax holding threshold of $750,000 which has been brought don from $2,000,000.

A more positive change from the recent legislation is that first home buyers entering the housing market will see a rise in the Queensland First Home Owners’ Grant temporary increase from $15,000 to $20,000 for contracts on newly constructed homes purchased between July 1, 2017 and December 31, 2017. Specific voluntary contributions from superannuation after 1st July 2017 are now accessible for first home buyers also, the voluntary contributions will be accessible by individuals from July 1, 2018. Limits apply to the amount that individuals can contribute under this measure to $15,000 per year and $30,000 in total.

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Harmony for Sunshine Coast Property Development.

With a growing population estimated to reach over 500,000 by 2036, the first steps to a major development project in Palm View have begun.

Peter Crosby Way officially opens on Monday, it is the northern access into the 378ha project to the south of Sippy Downs. Over the next 15 to 20 years Harmony will deliver more than 4800 homes for 12,000 future residents, all enhanced by 100 hectares of open space.

Harmony is also proposed to offer a town centre covering 15,250 Square-Metres of floor area.

Peter Crosby a local Sunshine Coast Farmer has been a land-owner since 1964 and has strong roots in the area.
Crosby Hill Road at Buderim is named after the family.

Mr Crosby has been operating a cattle farm on the land, and a cane farm in previous decades.

AVID Property Group general manager Said in a recent interview with the Daily “The road’s name pays homage to the site’s Crosby family history and will service 12,000 future Harmony residents, as well as those in neighbouring communities.”

Work has already commenced on display homes in the Harmony Display World, with 43 homes from 25 varied national and local building partners expected to open in the second half of this year.

Sunshine Coast Looking Prosperous In The Nations Property Market.

As the ethos between the nation’s capital cities continuing to change day by day, Sydney is expanding at an exponential rate with its second and Third CBD growing out to the west. Brisbane is beginning to take on the cultures and lifestyles of both Sydney and Melbourne. Adelaide has been suggested to be in desperate need of some major economic drivers and Perth continues to move forwards with its outward expansion.

Some of the nation’s smaller cities have been seeing a remarkable increase in population with the Gold Cost currently sitting at 638,000 and the Sunshine Coast boasting 327,000 residents as of 2016. In a recent article written by The Australian they will continue to grow for another generation. Combined with Newcastle’s population at 439,000 and Canberra’s 429,000, these four cities contain 1.8 million people which is approximately 8 percent of the Australian population.

It could be suggested these record highs are because of the existing links to Queensland’s Capital city Brisbane, with the link between the two Queensland ‘Coasts’ becoming stronger and stronger people are drawn toward the famed ‘Coast’ Lifestyle. It’s quite impressive when you consider that both Coasts exist, as Australians were found to be looking for a more relaxed style of living as a prime retirement destination.

Bringing this back to the current housing situation, we have seen growth consecutively for 5-years in a row. The recorded rate of growth has accelerated over the first quarter of this year, with the combined capital city index being found to be increasing at its fastest annual pace since May 2010. This continual increase in property value has resulted in the price of residential property reaching $7.0 trillion nationally.

With the Sunshine Coast reflecting this same trend and the population continues to grow, the Coast property market is an exciting prospect for potential investors and home owners. The figures show the Sunshine Coast region’s median house price for the quarter lifted 4.8% to $545,000 from the previous quarter and the median for the year rose 6.2% to $552,129. The unit market showing a good level of growth for the last 12 months at 4.4% to $391,262 according to a recent report by CoreLogic.

At present I can imagine that Mooloolaba is being driven by the very limited supply of quality beachside homes and Birtinya & Wurtulla experiencing a lot of new development in part to the Kawana Health Hub which has raised the median sale price for houses by quite a margin.

Investor interest reaches all time high on the Sunshine Coast.

I absolutely love this place, and by the stats and the feedback in the area, so do tourists as well.

For me first hand knowledge and feedback is king, and in a recent interview with the Daily, Mantra Group Regional General Manager Winston Hall said the Group, which operates seven properties on the Sunshine Coast, has also seen a strong uplift in visitor arrivals into the region.”Our Peppers, Mantra and BreakFree resorts on the Sunshine Coast are experiencing unprecedented demand, with most properties nearing no, capacity on weekends and during peak periods, achieving a combined average occupancy of 81% throughout the reporting year,” said Mr Hall.

“Not only are our occupancy rates at record levels, visitors are also staying longer with an increase in our guests’ average length of stay year on year.

“Our two properties in the holiday hotspot of Noosa continue to go from strength to strength and we’re also seeing strong uplift in corporate business, particularly at Mantra Mooloolaba Beach.”

The great thing about this is the benefit to investors in the area, with rate of occupancy trough holiday letting on the rise. It means that the income provided from investment units will show an equal rise for this financial quarter, and not to mention the $2.06 billion to the local economy.

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Revealed – The Sunshine Plaza Cornmeal Promenade, Connecting the Sunshine Plaza to SunCentral.

With the level of infrastructure development growing on the Sunshine Coast at an astonishing rate, news of the $400 million expansion of the Sunshine Plaza have been released. Project Developer Lend Lease have released concepts of how its new expansion of the Sunshine Plaza will look and its pretty impressive to say the least.

The major focus of the development if on the new Cornmeal Promenade which will be transformed into a gorgeous outdoor waterfront dining and leisure area. Located on the north-west side of the existing centre, it will provide customers a range of restaurants, social and outdoor leisure area along a connected pedestrian pathway.

The new outdoor leisure areas will be connected by a pedestrian bridge which is to be built across Cornmeal Creek, linking to the Woolworths Plaza Parade precinct it will help to ease customer access around the centre.

Global architecture, planning and design firm Callison RTKL, lead the creative design process for the centre expansion including the Cornmeal Promenade precinct.

The redevelopment will provide 24 hour access to the public boardwalk which connects to the existing pedestrian network through to the Maroochydore CBD and the coast beyond. Construction works are progressing nicely and activity underway in the western car park and along Cornmeal Creek.

Sunshine Plaza Centre Manager Michael Manwaring said he was excited to share the latest artist impressions of the redevelopment with the local community.

Mr Manwaring said 200 construction personnel are on site daily through the current phase of construction to deliver the new Kmart multi-level car park, additional two-level Myer rooftop parking, and a new Myer loading dock by late 2017.

“The Sunshine Plaza is a unique retail destination set over a natural waterway capturing what we love about the region and what we are famous for on the Coast.

“Our intent with the redevelopment has always been to further build on this special guest experience already available at our Riverwalk entertainment and dining precinct,” he said.

A new feature will be a “promenade lawn” offering a family-friendly area in front of the restaurant and creek.

“It will be a large area, with bocce courts, outdoor chess and free activities for families,”

This is a pretty amazing opportunity for the Sunshine Coast, with yet another incredible development to boost the rapidly growing economy even further.

Its a numbers game, Tourism and the Maroochydore CBD.

With Suncentral the new Maroochydore CBD quickly becoming a reality. In 2016 it was estimated that there was a population of 289,389 on the Sunshine Coast (Sunshine Coast Council, Population and Housing Forecasts 2011 to 2026).

Now with a suggested annual growth of 2.48% per annum, its forecasted that by 2036 the Sunshine Coast will become home to over 536,000 residents.

Over the past 12 months what is interesting is the Sunshine Coast welcomed 3,522,000 tourists in 12 months to Sept 2016 (up 12.9%). Based on the infrastructure developments, the new Maroochydore CBD, the expansion of the Maroochydore Airport and the Maroochydore Sunshine Plaza extension see the 160,500 recorded working people on the coast rise if so will it be in tourism & retail related job roles only time will tell.

However, the Sunshine Coast still continues to be a popular destination for domestic and international visitors, particularly from more traditional source markets such as New Zealand, United Kingdom and Germany. With the upgrade of the Maroochydore Airport, runway redevelopment will help to increase the size of aircrafts and not to mention more international travellers from places such as South-East Asia will be able to arrive on the Sunshine Coast, which in turn will further boost visitor arrivals to the region and help to strengthen the Sunshine Coast economy.


There has been quite a bit of press of late of a slowing market in some southern states which can often have a positive effect on our local market. As southern markets do clam down a little, buyers will quite often begin to look further a field in terms of investments and the Sunshine Coast has predominantly been a good prospect for these interstate buyers.

Given the additional infrastructure now well under way across the coast, and the fact that we are set for some of the largest changes to our property landscape in over 20 years. We have been welcoming many interstate investors, and it is worth noting however that these souther markets are coming off incredible double digit growth numbers of 16.7% last year for Sydney houses and 15.1% for Melbourne houses to more normal but quite steady growth of the 4.5% predicted for Sydney and 5.6% growth predicted for Melbourne in 2017 (according to an ABC news report).

With the cost of money still very affordable, the overall picture for the property market still looks very strong for 2017.