“IF THE city wants to provide a sustainable economic pipeline, which provides vast and diverse opportunities to future generations of Gold Coasters, it needs a strong and supported CBD.
Suggestions of a second CBD, such as Robina or Coomera, are unmerited and only weaken the economic strength and integrity of our region, while hurting the city’s reputation as a place to do business and invest. Southport has always been the CBD of the Gold Coast, and its position as the city’s business capital was only cemented when the state government declared Southport a Priority Development Area in October 2013.
Since then, more than $2.5 billion in commercial, residential and industrial development has been committed to the area, showcasing the significance of having a dedicated business hub. In addition:
- Southport has the highest concentration of employment of any statistical division of the Gold Coast, providing 25,000 jobs, with these figures expected to grow to 60,000 by 2036.
- Southport has the highest amount of commercial floor space in the city, with more than 150,000sqm over close to 100 buildings.
- Mayor Tom Tate recently predicted
- Southport’s current population of 30,000 will more than double by 2036.
- Southport will be the epicenter for the Commonwealth Games, as home to the 30ha athlete’s village at Parklands and the $50 million Aquatic Centre.
- Southport is home to the vibrant Chinatown precinct, adding a multicultural flavor to our emerging city centre.
- Southport is home to the Gold Coast University Hospital, the G:Link which connects Southport to Surfers Paradise and Broadbeach, the world-class Broadwater Parklands, and Griffith University.
Anyone who suggests that the Gold Coast doesn’t need a CBD or should have multiple CBDs, is not considering the future viability and sustainability of the city.
Business supports business, and prosperity and business confidence is created in a region when efficiencies are made and supply chains are formed. A CBD that boasts an array of businesses and industries gives businesses the best chance at long-term sustainable growth.
Historically, the Gold Coast’s greatest failing is its cyclical economy, with big booms and big busts, rather than other cities that experience a more stable economic pattern. For the reasons explained above, the focus on a core CBD can help ease this cycle providing more business certainty and confidence.
Ultimately, the Gold Coast’s turf wars need to end if the city wants to grow and reach its full potential.
It shouldn’t be a question of: how can we claim the city’s CBD status? Business leaders should be asking: how can we leverage off one another to not only better our area, but also the city as a whole?
The Gold Coast is the sixth largest city in Australia and arguably the fastest growing city in the nation. It makes sense that the Gold Coast has a strong and diverse CBD, and a CBD that is supported by all. “