YP Gold Coast has released an updated edition of their ‘Great Ideas for the Gold Coast’ advocacy report to stimulate discussion and debate regarding the long-term success of the City beyond the COVID-19 pandemic. The report, prepared in collaboration with Civity, a Gold Coast town planning firm, and Griffith University, sets out a series of ideas on how the Coast business community could exponentially thrive and why the City needs to embrace growth and advanced technology.
YP Gold Coast president Mary Grant said the team decided to update their strategic framework, developed back in 2017, to ensure it remained relevant and in-step with the issues facing business owners, residents and professionals on the Coast.
“The Gold Coast is at a turning point in its evolution, providing a rare opportunity to reimagine the future and plan for long-term success beyond the COVID-19 pandemic,” she said.
“Great Ideas for the Gold Coast 2017 report set out five ideas and a number of those were successfully realised over the past few years, such as the public ferry service for the Gold Coast, the expansion of the arts and culture public spaces at HOTA, the implementation of public WI-FI and the ongoing light rail delivery.
“Our refreshed 2021 report is an important call to action. Great cities don’t just happen by chance – residents, businesses and government have a collective role in telling our story and shaping our future.
“We encourage everyone interested in the future growth of the Gold Coast to engage in mature and robust debate again and step forward and be a loud champion for our wonderful city.”
YP Gold Coast vice-president, Civity director and Great Ideas for the Gold Coast panellist Martin Garred said YP Gold Coast and Civity collaborated with some of Griffith University’s brightest students and the Cities Research Institute in a wide-ranging review of the Gold Coast’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats, which informed the development of the ideas in the report.
“From the Coast’s humble beginnings as a collection of tourism villages, it has grown quickly and must continue to diversify and amplify the great qualities that make the Gold Coast so unique,” he said.
“The Gold Coast culture, environment and our ‘have a go’ attitude is fundamental to ongoing growth and maturity.”
The three refreshed ‘Great Ideas’ for 2021 include building the city’s global profile as a place where small businesses and entrepreneurs flourish and grow, smart and well-planned growth, and investment in manufacturing technologies, transport solutions or transport and leisure opportunities.
Professor of Urban Management and Planning, Griffith University’s Cities Research Institute director and ‘Great Ideas for The Gold Coast’ panellist Paul Burton said bringing as many Gold Coasters into thoughtful conversations about our future was paramount.
“We need to actively create the future we want and not just wait for things to happen to us,” he said.
“That’s why it’s important that everyone has a chance to join in these conversations, and that people who don’t always think their views are valued are actively encouraged and supported to do so.”
Destination Gold Coast CEO and YP Gold Coast panellist Patricia O’Callaghan said ongoing collaboration and innovation would help circumnavigate the initial short-term challenges post-pandemic to support future success.
“The community has been working hard to deliver sustainable plans to future proof the Gold Coast,” she said.
“We are a city of interconnected industries and there is great potential for the Gold Coast to thrive, achievable through public and private enterprise that strengthens our economy, and continued investment in our community.”