Sunshine Coast Design Strategy

  • 2020

  • Architectural
    Place Design

Commissioned By:

Sunshine Coast Council

Designed In:


Sunshine Coast Design has been developed to educate, inspire and raise awareness of the value of good design and how to achieve place-based design to help protect and enhance all that is loved on the Sunshine Coast.

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Image: Andrew Maccoll
Image: Andrew Maccoll
Image: Andrew Maccoll
Image: Andrew Maccoll
Image: Andrew Maccoll
Image: Andrew Maccoll
Image: Andrew Maccoll
Image: Andrew Maccoll
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  • In recent years there has been a proliferation of built form that is largely unsuitable for the Sunshine Coast climate, landscape and lifestyle. This prompted Council to prepare a strategy to guide the design of homes, buildings, parks, public spaces, streets and neighbourhoods. for residents, businesses and visitors and help strengthen the liveability of the Sunshine Coast. Council recognises that good quality place-based design is critical to shaping our future, particularly as the Sunshine Coast is the 5th fastest growing region in Australia with the population expected to increase to 500,000 by 2041 - roughly 8000 new residents each year.

  • Early in the project it was established that Council could not start with a policy enforcing change, rather, change would need to be encouraged. Council did not want to produce a strategy that ‘sat on the shelf’. Instead, awareness raising and education, about the benefits of good design, would be the first step. Sunshine Coast Design is the first instalment of the Design Strategy and includes a hardcover design book, videos and website. Developing appealing and effective resources, to engage a complex and diverse audience, has proved to be a clever decision and has surpassed expectations.

  • Sunshine Coast Design can profoundly improve liveability and sustainability. Economic benefits include: - For developers: an increase in land values, sales, rental returns and asset value. - For residents: reduced running costs, better re-sale value and attracting higher quality longer-term tenants. - For local business: increased foot traffic, increased sales, improved marketing, strengthen business viability, civic pride. Environmental benefits include good design through reduced: energy consumption, resource and land consumption and less environmental damage. Social benefits include better security and less crime, less pollution, better health, greater accessibility, more inclusive public spaces and increased sense of community.

  • Rigorous and Authentic Engagement ----------------------------------------------------- Sunshine Coast Design is the result extensive community and stakeholder engagement and an open, collaborative process focused on what is loved and valued about the region. Residents, design professionals, planners, professional associations and community groups of the Sunshine Coast, all contributed to a discussion focused on what is loved and valued about the region. A wide range of engagement activities, over two engagement phases, were used to ensure the community and stakeholders were given multiple opportunities to contribute including: over eighty one-on-one meetings, 8 focus group workshops, a design forum, 10 pop-up stalls, and 2 online surveys and media campaigns. Information gathered was used to identify what the community values most about the region which led to the development of ten design principles. Tools for Success ------------------------- Key tools to support success: 1. Sunshine Coast Design book - a beautiful book demonstrating good design 2. Sunshine Coast Design website - a suite of online tools: example projects, videos, the design and evaluation checklist 3. Communication Plan and key messages 4. Implementation Plan (10 year) - to guide implementation and further development of the Design Strategy 5. Evaluation Plan (10 year) - to test and measure success