The foundations upon which the Sunshine Coast economy is developing are the following 7 high value industries that Sunshine Coast Council has identified to create jobs and drive population growth in line with Council’s vision to be:
While all these industries are evident in many cities and regions, it is rare to find all of them thriving in one region, not to mention in a region that delivers an exquisite backdrop to business with an incredible lifestyle for residents and tourists alike.
Across each of these sectors we have seen significant growth and innovation that shows the region is on track to exceed the economic growth forecast. From this expansion it is evident the Sunshine Coast is not just a holiday beach town heavily reliant on tourism, or like a mining town that can boom and bust depending on just one industry.
The solid foundation of an already diversified economy rapidly expanding in a range of innovative industries places the Sunshine Coast in a robust and resilient position to ride the waves of the future. Not only are each of the pillars progressing beyond the vision of the Council’s Strategic Plan, there are powerful synergies at play that maximise the opportunity even further.
Supporting the 7 core industries, and in fact all business across the region, are some significant game changers that have forced a permanent shift for the region and are set to accelerate the economy into the future, beyond any forecasting model applied to date.
THE 7 KEY INDUSTRIES ARE BACKED BY 4 CORE FUNDAMENTAL PROJECTS.
Located in the heart of Maroochydore, this emerging CBD is like nothing else across the country. It’s the first greenfield CBD in Australia! Combining office, retail and residential space with ground-breaking technology and sustainable solutions, it is a strategically planned, purpose built complete CBD ecosystem and it is one of our region’s biggest game-changing projects.
To be delivered over the next 15 years, once completed, its footprint will be larger than Brisbane’s CBD with +65,000m2 of office space, 4,000+ apartments, integrated parks and waterways, and all within walking distance to the beach. Combined with a university campus, convention centre, links to mass transit and the new Sunshine Coast Airport, it is estimated to provide a boost of more than $4bn directlyto the economy, and over 30,000+ jobs.
With an impressive list of smart features setting it apart from other regional centres, and indeed the state capitals, the Maroochydore CBD has been designed for the 21st Century. It is breaking new ground with its extensive use of technology to create a cleaner, greener, more livable and dynamic city.
Connected directly to the CBD is Queensland’s first international data and telecommunications cable. The Sunshine Coast is the only regional city in the world to have its own cable connection and prior to this, Sydney and Perth were Australia’s only connection points.
So what does this mean?
If COVID has taught us anything, it’s the importance of access to fast and reliable data. This network means the Coast has the fastest connection point from eastern Australia to Asia. It’s expected to attract leading investment and commerce businesses from across the globe who rely on superior telecommunications infrastructure. As the world enters the 4th industrial revolution, the ‘internet of things’ will transform life for everyone and the Sunshine Coast will be at the forefront.
With all the right ingredients to foster creativity, innovation and entrepreneurship, matched by world-class facilities and infrastructure, the Sunshine Coast will be central to the future of creating our new tomorrow. The Sunshine Coast is the only location in Australia for tech and data based companies for redundancy and latency potential. Like Colorado is for Silicon Valley in the USA, so is the Sunshine Coast for not only Australian tech and industry leaders but for global businesses to recruit and base people and assets with incredible access to data and a world-class lifestyle.
This region is likely to become home to industries that don’t yet exist, while also supporting the need nationally to provide a location for latency, redundancy and an alternative location to source and house people for every major tech reliant business in Australia. While the cable landed on the Sunshine Coast and was connected to its data station in 2020, it is yet to be connected to the community and so the full impact of its existence is still to be revealed. No one
really knows what this means for our region because there is no model to compare it to. Others have tried to assess and compare to other cities around the world and other cable connections, but being the only regional connection and with the combination of exceptional circumstances here on the Sunshine Coast we believe any predictions made to date are nothing compared to what we envisage is the real potential impact.
Once it is fully operational, which is expected to occur in 2022, it will make telecommunications faster, cheaper and more robust which are highly attractive attributes for data sensitive or latency sensitive industries that desire quick access to the Asian markets. What we expect the cable will do for our region is more than fast internet, it’s the beginning of a phenomenon that’s going to impact every single industry and has the potential to change and improve work, leisure, entertainment, education, research and health... with the Sunshine Coast driving it all.
The Sunshine Coast Airport Precinct offers connection to the rest of the country and the world with both domestic and international services, not only for people, but for product too!
The new $334 million international runway opened at Sunshine Coast Airport during the height of COVID, so we are yet to see its full impact as the world gradually re-opens. However, we know that with the wider and longer runway our region can now open its skies to large passenger aircraft such as the Airbus A330 and the Boeing 787. Of course, this isn’t just about tourism and the people sitting on these flights, it’s also about what can go inside the planes. Having an international airport increases the region’s ability to export goods and services across the globe - a direct benefit that’s estimated to be worth more than $4 billion.
In the next two decades, a further $200 million will also be invested in the airport to develop new infrastructure such as an upgraded terminal and dedicated freight facility. Once carrier deals are made, the Sunshine Coast will be even more accessible to millions across the globe. The investment into the airport and the strength and confidence this aviation hub provides, has seen a stimulation and growth in other investments both within the precinct with aviation and aerospace businesses as well as further across the Coast including; convention facilities, accommodation, tourism events, parks, IT, health, education and manufacturing.
The largest health precinct in the Southern Hemisphere brings with it access to health services previously only provided in the state capital.
A strong economy brings confidence, prosperity and opportunity... and more people! Anchored by the Sunshine Coast University Public and Private hospitals, the health precinct continues to grow with leading allied health, wellness, support, rehabilitation, and natural medicine providers. This affords all potential
residents the ability to choose the Sunshine Coast regardless of their medical needs and gives a sense of safety and security that shouldn’t be underestimated.
The health precinct has been the impetus infrastructure project that kicked off the massive spending underway bringing jobs and confidence to the Coast. Ongoing, it continues to provide secure and ever expanding operational expenditure and creating the location and demand for further ancillary services.
Already employing more than 6,000 people with the vast majority of them being new jobs in the last 4 years, it is expected that once fully developed the precinct will have direct employment of over 15,000 and create further jobs in other areas of the community. The last 12 months has seen this hub expand to include the new Vitality Village collaborative allied health office space, extensive new retail offerings and more food, convenience and entertainment offerings. All of these pieces provide more lifestyle amenities to residents and further promote the popularity of residential offerings close to and surrounding the health precinct.
A strong economy brings confidence, prosperity and opportunity... and more people!
In our next blog post we’ll talk about the 7 Economy Accelerators of the Sunshine Coast
Download our full guide: Why The Sunshine Coast (2023 Edition)
View our selection of Sunshine Coast investment properties for sale.