Once best known for its golden beaches, Queensland’s Gold Coast has become a Mecca for businesses as diverse as space technology and building buses and luxury yachts.
When Adam Gilmour and his brother James of Gilmour Space Technologies wanted to establish a rocket-building “centre of excellence” in Australia, the Gold Coast was their obvious choice.
“We started a rocket company and there was no particular place in Australia that was the centre of excellence,” Gilmour said.
“We chose between Brisbane and the Gold Coast so we could attract talent both from the Brisbane area and the Gold Coast area.
“We’ve stayed here because we’ve got really good relationships with the universities in the neighbourhood, including Griffith and the University of Queensland, and we’ve been able to attract a lot of foreign rocket talent into the country and from NSW and Victoria because the Gold Coast is a wonderful place to live and bring up your children.”
From rockets to mining equipment, luxury yachts, beauty, healthcare, nutritional supplements and low-emission green buses, new-wave manufacturing is now the third-largest sector on the Gold Coast.
Total sales from manufacturing on the Gold Coast are valued at over $8 billion, which have grown almost 20 per cent over the past 5 years.
Amid a concerted push to diversify the Gold Coast’s economic base, major manufacturers and home-grown manufacturing success stories have increasingly cemented themselves, and the sector, in the city’s economic landscape.
Demand for manufacturing during the pandemic has been fuelled by a need for stronger local supply chains, but this is sidelined by the rapid pace of technology changing the way we make products, from modern methods of construction to advanced robotics.
The number of full-time equivalent workers in manufacturing on the Gold Coast has grown by 15 per cent in the 5 years to June 2020, with more and more skilled professionals required, many of which are coming from interstate.
Innovative bus and mass transport manufacturer, BusTech, employs 300 people making buses on the Gold Coast and in Adelaide, as well as a joint venture bus manufacturing operation with Elphinstone at Burnie in Tasmania.
The company has grown from its beginnings hiring former staff of General Motors Holden in Adelaide after GMH announced in 2020 that the Holden brand would be retired by 2021, to become a national group. A recruitment drive in the United Kingdom followed, aimed at Australian expats returning home during the COVID-19 pandemic.
With many Australians wanting to come home and continue working at the cutting edge of transportation, the company attracted talent to bolster its workforce specialising in manufacturing clean energy mass-transport solutions at its facility at Burleigh on the southern Gold Coast.
BusTech Group Executive Chairman Christian Reynolds said the focus on environmentally-friendly buses, manufactured using use a supply chain that is over 95 per cent located in Australia, was in response to the transport sector’s position as the second-largest and fastest-growing emitter of greenhouse gas emissions in NSW and Australia.
“To me, it is all about the future of energy transport – energy capture and energy creation,” Reynolds said.
“We are now switching to all-electric buses and we have a hydrogen bus in the project scope and design phase.”
Complementing the Gold Coast’s network of innovative micro-factories, the Yatala Enterprise Area has emerged as the industrial engine room of the city.
The 3,300 hectare precinct is home to some of Australia’s leading manufactures in food and beverage, construction materials, machinery and equipment, plastic and chemicals as well as warehousing, transport and distribution.
Carlton & United Breweries, Visy, Real Pet Food Company, Caterpillar and Seabest International are based in the precinct, along with regional distribution centres for Aldi and Woolworths.
For Gilmour, the Helensvale-based rocket business that manufactures tanks, support structures, rocket engines, avionics and software for launch vehicles to carry satellites into space, is locked into the Gold Coast.
The company that has 72 staff but is looking to grow to beyond 100 by the end of the year, said the strength of its supply chain from Brisbane to the Gold Coast meant it was ideally located.
“We’re very happy here and we’ve now established the Gold Coast as the centre of excellence for building rockets in Australia and we’d love to stay here as we expand, which we plan to do in the next 12 to 18 months,” Gilmour said.
“We’re trailblazers, we’ve had to push through a lot of barriers a lot of hurdles, a lot of regulation, a lot of scepticism, but we’re doing it and we’re committed to keep going.”
Article Source: inqld.com.au
Southport, Gold Coast apartment development site sells for $6 million
Sales activity for high-density-zoned development sites in Southport had been relatively subdued compared to the rest of the Gold Coast market
A Southport, Gold Coast development site – once planned for a 47-level tower – has sold at auction for $6 million.
It was bought by an undisclosed Gold Coast investor.
The 2430sq m site is at 114 Scarborough St, on the corner of Hicks St.
The receivers listing was sold by Colliers International who had five bidders compete.
It fetched above price expectations.
“Sales activity for high-density-zoned development sites in Southport has been relatively subdued this year compared to the rest of the Gold Coast market,” agent Steven King said.
“While sites in southern beachside markets continue to attract record prices, this sale demonstrates that Southport has begun its development site rebound,” he told the local paper.
The vacant site is within Southport’s designated Priority Development Area.
It was reported that a NSW-based company and Chinese investors had previously planned a 47-level apartment/hotel tower.
The DA approval was for a 47 level tower comprising of a 225 bed hotel and 264 (1, 2 and 3 bed) apartments
The site had cost $7.65 million, The Gold Coast Bulletin reported.
The site borders the Gold Coast City Council’s recently proposed “Towers Of Power” government and court precinct, a proposed $300 million development.
Article Source: www.urban.com.au
Gold Coast Developers Hand Over Habitats
Keylin and Kinstone Group are the latest developers to give land back for nature reserves on the Gold Coast as the state government continues its bid to muscle in on another site.
A 27ha “gift” to the Gold Coast City Council has been made as part of the $650-million Serenity 4212 development near Hope Island.
The parcel of land dedication was a requirement of the application approval and is expected to the Coombabah Nature Reserve and Wetlands.
Keylin director Louis Cheung said it was also an opportunity to contribute to wildlife preservation.
“One of Serenity’s greatest appeals is it’s immersion in natural surrounds despite being just moments from a sought-after lifestyle precinct, and so it was extremely important to us that we preserve the ecological amenity wherever possible,” Cheung said.
Keylin and Kinstone purchased the development in February, 2020 from Sime Darby and Brunsfield International Group.
As well, 30ha at Merala Nature Refuge, next to the Currumbin Valley Eco Village, originally purchased by private landholders for preservation, was added to the state government’s protected areas in recent weeks.
Bid to buy 148ha at Currumbin continues
The Queensland government is in the process of trying to “compulsorily acquire” 148ha of farmland at Currumbin Waters which was originally approved for 348 residential lots.
The site, known as Martha’s Farm or Martha’s Vineyard, was put on the market mid-2020 by Aveo Group and bought by brothers John and Bruce Neumann of theNeumann Group.
Neumann Developments was contacted regarding the issue and declined to comment.
Minister for State Development Steven Miles said they had been in talks with landowners since the start of the year to purchase the site.
“Unfortunately, an agreement has not been reached, and we have had to take further action. We remain open to a commercial resolution with the landowner,” Miles said.
“Martha’s Farm or Martha’s Vineyard has been subject to several development approvals since the 1980s, with the current approval for 348 residential lots, a marine precinct and artificial lake.
“It’s a highly constrained site with steep topography and flooding issues, making it difficult to develop, but has some unique features that make it worth preserving and enhancing.”
The state government is already in the early stages of masterplanning the Currumbin Eco Parkland for that site.
Article Source: www.theurbandeveloper.com
Sunshine Coast property market outstrips Brisbane and the Gold Coast for house price growth
The Sunshine Coast property market is now outstripping Greater Brisbane and even the Gold Coast after house prices rose an eyewatering 23.1 per cent in a year, raising fresh fears over affordability and questions as to just how high prices will grow.
Spurred on by the swelling sea-change trend, low interest rates and the state’s track record of low COVID-19 cases, median house prices inched their closest yet to the million-dollar mark, arriving at a record-blasting $825,000 in the June quarter, according to the latest Domain House Price Report.
On the Gold Coast, house prices shot up by an exorbitant 18.2 per cent over the same period, bringing the median to a record $792,000 – which is $122,000 more than in June 2020.
By contrast, Brisbane house prices rose by 13 per cent to $678,236.
While detached houses continued to steal the show in both coastal cities, their respective apartment sectors managed to also collect impressive annual growth. Unit prices on the Sunshine Coast rose by 14.3 per cent from $490,000 to $560,000, and by 9.9 per cent on the Gold Coast to a clean $500,000 – up $45,000 from this time last year.
The climb in both sectors has revealed the incredible pulling power of each coastal hot spot, according to Domain chief of research and economics Nicola Powell, who said that, despite soaring prices, the cities remained cheap compared to Sydney and Melbourne.
While it could be a moot point for frustrated locals, Dr Powell said the last three months could spell a reprieve.
“It’s the first time the Sunshine Coast has exceeded $800,000 but while prices are continuing to rise for the Gold Coast and the Sunshine Coast, the rate of growth has eased,” she said.
Over the June quarter, house prices increased by a slightly more subdued 4.8 per cent, and by 4.2 per cent on the Gold Coast.
On the Sunshine Coast, Tom Offermann, of Tom Offermann Real Estate, said house prices were up by as much as a third in some pockets of Noosaville and Sunshine Beach – which he felt was largely fuelled by the pandemic.
“COVID-19 stimulated a lot of people to search for a new lifestyle, especially those from southern states, and coupled with historically low interest rates the flood of buyers descended on the Sunshine Coast with sizeable budgets,” he said.
“The supply side has been very tight [however], especially in Noosa where there is minuscule opportunity for new development due to strict planning controls and almost no vacant land. Over the past year we have had six to 12 registered bidders at most auctions and that is showing no sign of reducing.
“Premium properties are no exception,” Mr Offermann added. “We recently auctioned a beachfront block at 2 David Low Way [in Castaways Beach] which had expectations around $20 million, and we had 14 registered bidders. It reached $16 million at auction and has since sold for a much higher price.
“A heart-warming sale recently was when we were asked by a young 97-year-old lady to sell her Noosa Heads waterfront house … she and her late husband built the house in 1984.
“The sale was by auction with 13 registered bidders fighting it out until the hammer fell at $7.25 million. The low-set house was very modest by today’s comparisons, so the buyers saw the value in the 600-square-metre allotment.
“The interesting thing is that we had a dozen unsatisfied buyers left over, each with capacity in excess of $5 million to spend. Meanwhile, Joyce wasn’t too concerned about the wonderful price – all she needed was enough for the next move.”
Asked how he saw the interstate migration trajectory, Mr Offermann said he believed the trend would continue for years to come thanks to a backlog of sea changers still waiting to pounce.
On the Gold Coast, Ivy Realty director Isaac Kim said despite the documented ease over the past quarter, the three months up to June were among of the best he had had in eight years.
“I see record sales almost every week now … it is unbelievable and we are very overwhelmed. And it’s that demand from people from interstate [driving the growth],” Mr Kim said. “Since last year we have had about 27,000 or so interstate migrants and it’s going to continue to grow.
“And everyone is complaining there’s not enough stock because it’s all selling … in fact, it’s becoming a big problem for us … and I think we’ll see another big wave coming from interstate soon.
“The Gold Coast population doubles during summer time … and it’s because of the lifestyle and the climate here and that’s also what’s driving the price up … also the fact that the government is spending millions on infrastructure.
“So there’s huge room for [more] growth … this is just the beginning, we haven’t hit the highest peak yet
Mr Kim, who broke his own personal sale price record with the $14.18 million transaction of 3-7 Sir Lancelot Close, Sovereign Islands, earlier this year, said the region’s prestige sector was still considered cheap by southern standards.
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