DEMOLITION work to take out buildings in the heart of Maroochydore to make way for a new city centre for the Sunshine Coast started today.

Mayor Mark Jamieson said the community would begin to see the immense size of the future Maroochydore City Centre within weeks.

"I don't think people realise the enormity of this project and that it is the only greenfield CBD development in Australia," Mr Jamieson said in a statement.

The council has acquired the Horton Park Golf Course for the new city which is dependent on private investment.

"We have a blank page - 53 hectares of land to transform into a future business centre, setting the Sunshine Coast apart from other locations across Australia.

"The Maroochydore City Centre will be instrumental in building and strengthening the economic and civic base of our region.

"This massive project, which will be delivered over the next 25 years, will provide a mix of residential, commercial, retail, civic and community uses to develop a thriving and vibrant business district and city centre, complementing and enhancing Maroochydore's existing business offering.

"The master planning process has also identified entertainment, exhibition and convention facilities, community facilities and meeting spaces, parklands, walkways, recreation areas and waterways and an enhanced public transport network.

Waterways feature heavily in the new city centre vision.
Waterways feature heavily in the new city centre vision.

"This is one of the most exciting chapters in Sunshine Coast's history and council, and the community as a whole, are fortunate to be part of this project from the very start, to see this rise from the ground in the coming years.

Demolition work at the Dolphin Centre, which used to house the office of controversial Coast MP and former Speaker Peter Slipper, began Wednesday.

Demolition works are expected to be completed by late September, when the site will be graded, stabilised and fenced until infrastructure works begin in 2015.

Following demolition, the project will focus on operational works and delivering key infrastructure, such as site preparation and major services.

Regional Projects Portfolio Councillor Tim Dwyer said the council-acquired commercial properties, from the Dolphin Centre to the building formerly occupied by Bendigo Bank, were being demolished to make way for a new intersection extending First Ave across Aerodrome Rd.

Public transport is a key part of the vision for the future Maroochydore.
Public transport is a key part of the vision for the future Maroochydore.

"All neighbouring business owners and residents have been advised of the upcoming works which have been approved to take place Monday to Friday, 7am-5pm and may include occasional work on Saturdays from 7am-5pm.

"Night works will only be considered to minimise disruption or where there may be a risk to public safety.

"All efforts will be made to minimise disruption to the public and a comprehensive traffic management plan will be deployed."

Cr Dwyer said there would be minimal delays for motorists and in the interest of public safety, the site would be fully-fenced off and pedestrians would be detoured as required.

"A major transport access will ultimately be created through the new Maroochydore City Centre to service all of the Maroochydore business area," Cr Dwyer said.

"This first construction stage will be a major boost for investment confidence in the region.

"Council's investment in the land will enable construction of much needed infrastructure to improve traffic issues and provide for future transport needs in Maroochydore and, over time, develop a civic, commercial, cultural and recreational core for the region.

Horton Park's golf course is set to undergo a transformation.
Horton Park's golf course is set to undergo a transformation.

"It will eventually establish Maroochydore as the leading business, employment and community services hub, which is what the region is seeking to achieve through its new economic development strategy."

Council has embarked on more detailed precinct planning and design of the first stage of development in readiness for the golf club to vacate the site in May 2015. 

Sunshine Coast Council resumed the Horton Park Golf Course site by agreement in 2012.

Mayor Jamieson said the project would be the catalyst to support existing Maroochydore commercial investment and explore new business opportunities with a focus on diversifying the economy and realising the region's potential.

"Maroochydore City will thrive and prosper if all components - the City Centre, Sunshine Plaza, Ocean St, Duporth Ave, Aerodrome Rd and others - are connected and all doing well," he said.

"It will be instrumental in building and strengthening our region as we strive to make Sunshine Coast the most sustainable region in Australia.
"This project has the potential to create thousands of jobs to support the construction industry, and ultimately Maroochydore will be home to many new businesses."



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