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Urban design

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Celebrate the 2017 Urban Design Awards

Celebrating the 2017 Gold Coast Urban Design Awards

Congratulations to the entrants and winners of the Gold Coast Urban Design Awards 2017.

The Awards celebrate the best of our built environment, and have become the city's most prestigious platform for recognition of design, liveability and sustainability.

Click on the tabs below to view the designs included in this year's Urban Design Awards.

 

Parklands project

Submitted by AAA – A joint venture between architects Arkhefield, ARM, Archipelago

The new community at Parklands is the Gold Coast’s largest ever urban-renewal project, and delivers a lifestyle-oriented, transit-facilitated space for living, working and learning. The Parklands Project balances an abundant seven hectares of green space with another seven hectares occupied by a 5840 square metre retail precinct centred around a village heart, as well as 1252 new apartment and townhouse dwellings. Archipelago, Arkhefield, ARM Architecture and LAT27 have master planned, designed and delivered the site for the developer, Grocon.

In late 2017, Parklands will be leased to the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games Organising Committee (GOLDOC), and will accommodate up to 6500 athletes and team officials as the Commonwealth Games Village. During the post-games period, the athletes' village will be transformed into a vibrant, inclusive and connected urban mixed-use community that serves in legacy as part of the Gold Coast Health and Knowledge Precinct, including Griffith University and the Gold Coast University Hospital.

The Parklands Project embraces the colourful cultural heritage of the Gold Coast to create an active, inviting, and human-scaled community, with great streets, an abundance of landscaped space and excellent amenity. The Parklands is an environmentally-conscious development, achieving a six-star rating as a pilot site for the new Green Star Communities rating tool. It also achieved a six-leaf rating under the Urban Development Institute of Australia (UDIA) Enviro Development rating system.

Jury comments

Parklands is an exemplar project that sets a high national and international benchmark for excellence in the integration of architecture and public realm. The complexity of designing for a single event and legacy simultaneously has been navigated with great thoughtfulness, care and design skill, supported by powerful advocacy across disciplines of urbanism, architecture and landscape architecture over a large site and half a decade or more

The jury particularly noted:

  • The successful structuring of the spaces through the master plan, where clarity and experience of the public realm drives the overall structure of the urban place.
  • The mix of uses to activate the precinct.
  • The connections to hospital, public transport and university.
  • The considered detail of public realm works.
  • The successful interaction of temporary versus permanent architecture.
  • The considered abstraction and interpretation of the wider city and landscape context through colour, sculpture and landscape.
  • The successful integration of diverse and adaptable housing types.
  • The way buildings frame and activate urban spaces throughout.

The design team, developers, and involved state and local authorities are to be warmly congratulated for persistence and commitment to quality over time. At every level of urbanism, from master planning through to detail, this project represents in excellence in approach and execution.

Gold Coast Sports and Leisure Centre Carrara

Submitted by Cardno, BVN and John Graham

Cardno and BVN were involved in the design of the Gold Coast Sports and Leisure Centre, which will host events at the 2018 Commonwealth Games and provide long-term recreation and sporting infrastructure for the Gold Coast.

The project includes two new indoor stadiums, adaptive re-use of the existing indoor sports centre, elite and community sports fields, a series of public parks and plazas, landscape, roads and car parking. The design addressed the challenges of working in a flood plain and provided appropriate infrastructure, visitor amenity and legacy values while integrating the existing Metricon Stadium precinct.

A number of key urban design principles and considerations guided the successful design and delivery of the project and include:

  • Acknowledgement and expression of the site’s unique context including its relationship to the Nerang River and its stories of growth and change.
  • Creation of comfortable and adaptable spaces that cater for events of various scales and everyday use.
  • Forming a sporting and recreational legacy for the city.
  • Establishment of appropriately scaled external plazas and landscape that reinforce the perception of a sports complex in a park while allowing for meeting, gathering and circulation.
  • Layering of rich historical references and storytelling through public art and collaboration with artist, John Graham.

Jury comments

This building houses a series of sports halls for accommodating a variety of activities for use by the wider community. This is a very popular building within the local community, and the combination of architectural and landscape building embraces its role, making a series of rich and engaging spaces for occupation and activity.

The insides of the building seems to ‘reach out’ to the landscape, with verandas and generous peninsular terraces that which, when we visited, were full of activity – running children, people warming up, cooling down, sipping coffee or just enjoying views out to fields and landscape beyond. These terraces frame a series of active spaces within the forecourt areas to the west, and a more ceremonial space to the east.

The eastern forecourt is elaborated with a narrative of the broader landscape and indigenous cultural heritage setting, expressed in rotating ‘totems’ which navigate the scale of the adjacent Metricon, and planting.

The forecourts are linked by an exceptional internal ‘street’, which is joyful in its top-lit curvaceous architecture as well as expressly democratic in its invitation to participate in the busyness of community sport and glance into sports hall activities either side.

The jury considered this project to represent an exemplary reworking of the ‘sports hall on the flood plain’ typology, where the building edges extend to and frame ground plane activities, creating an activated series of community spaces around the building. The jury noted that this would only be possible through a strong collaboration between architect and landscape architect.

City Village terrace homes

Submitted by Robina Projects Australia and Andrew Halstead Architects

City Village terrace homes is a quiet residential community located adjacent to Robina Town Centre in the rapidly growing, master planned suburb of Robina. It delivers a true walkable lifestyle, with two direct pedestrian and cycle links to Robina Town Centre and easy access to entertainment, employment and public transport via a lakefront boardwalk which provides visual separation and quietness.

The development also provides a missing pedestrian and cycle link to the adjacent communities to the south. Everything possible has been done to maximise green space and minimise hard surfaces, for example, by bringing the landscaping right out to the roadway between parking bays and the use of varying retaining and fence wall materials, colours and textures.

These materials and colours are replicated on the buildings, enhancing variety and individuality whilst providing a visual cohesion to each streetscape and throughout the development.

Gaps between and at the ends of buildings provide access for the resident to the public space wherever possible as well as being pleasant landscaped spaces on their own. Privacy between individual lots has been carefully considered to maximise amenity and privacy, with use of strategically located louvres and screens. The bio-retention has made maximum use of the site topography, being located at the perimeter of the lake where it softens the retaining wall edges whilst aiding privacy.

Jury comments

City Village comprises 207 terrace houses organised around the edge of a pleasant lake, all within walking distance of Robina Town Centre. The lots are five metres and six metres wide, and have been organised in an organic street pattern.

The development is made permeable for pedestrians with through block links integrated with pocket parks. Walkability is a priority, with well-defined footpath and walkways combined with shady trees.

The terrace homes are conceived as a human-scaled village, where architecture mediates between the public and private realms with a mixed palette of forms, materials and colours applied with restraint, resulting in a balance between individual identity and overall coherence.

The architects have also integrated permeable fencing and a variety of garden walls within the overall palette. The overarching design strategy, applied with care and skill, is commendable on a typology that will become increasingly popular on the Gold Coast.

Shopping centre redevelopment Broadbeach

Submitted by The Buchan Group

Oasis is a 1980s retail and residential development that replaced the original Broadbeach International Hotel that first opened in 1955.

The work along the Ground Floor facing Broadbeach Mall invigorates this critical element of the Central Broadbeach Entertainment Precinct. These tenancies enjoy a retail location shielded from the south-east winds, with uninterrupted winter sun and easy pedestrian access via the mall frontages.

The new awnings, paving, landscaping and lighting are designed to open the dining spaces out to the mall and the main pedestrian boulevard that runs along the northern face of the dining areas. The entry to the shopping centre is clearly identified with a larger roof and coloured vertical fins.

The rhythm created by the structural frames of the awning modulate the very linear form of the precinct. This rhythm is enhanced by the signage and at night by the strip LED lighting in the posts.

Large planters have been planted with advanced trees as well as quick-growing flowering vines that are already climbing the vertical wires and will continue across the overhead wires under the glazed section of the awning structure.

Jury comments

Prior to the implementation of this project, the southern edge of the mall has not successfully interacted with mall activity. This project successfully activates the edge of the shopping centre.

A row of north facing café dining areas is sheltered with a refined skillion structure inviting northern winter sun into the cafes. It creates a defined and consistent edge to the mall, whilst making highly legible and well-scaled entry canopies to the shopping centre.

The integration of signage and windscreens within a feathered canopy edge creates an elegant edge to the mall space. The canopy structure also integrates lighting and landscaping elements, reinforcing a calming, rhythmic edge to a space characterised by level changes, clutter and complexity.

Griffith University Student Guild Uni bar and link eatery

Submitted by Push

This project involved the re-planning and re-birthing of an ‘ugly duckling’ conglomerate structure that housed the Student Uni Bar, Function Room and some eating areas.

The major urban design manoeuvres involved relocating the Bar to create a new pedestrian entry to the university that links the new light rail station through an alfresco dining area and into the campus. Architecturally, the building’s many disparate parts are united in a clean palette of durable materials and rational planning to effectively renew the whole.

The original building fabric has been carved out to create the Link Laneway connection, complete with sky-blue roof light. This links the food tenancies and Uni Bar between the university entry and the campus.

The Bar is moved from the campus front door back into a larger area within the complex that has clear access to an outdoor terrace, under an extended sculptural roof as part of the works.

The new Uni Bar is strategically positioned on the Link Laneway pedestrian spine, which is a major campus thoroughfare. The new design incorporates three connected bars serving the main bar, outdoor terrace and the refurbished Function Room. It has become a successful campus hub for students and staff.

Jury comments

This project successfully creates a critical light rail address to the campus via a strategic and imaginative reworking of an existing facility.

The architects have exploited an opportunity to create a new, activated pedestrian spine which is cooled by breezes captured through the manipulation of the ‘venturi effect’. Shopfronts have been successfully integrated into a coherent and rich series of spaces that are suitably informal.

The architecture makes a clear and strong welcoming gesture to people arriving from the light rail, inviting use and exploration of a well-considered sequence of human-scaled spaces.

Surfers riverside edge treatment project

Submitted by GHD and Gold Coast Waterways Authority

The Surfers Riverside Masterplan established a shared vision for a high quality public space that connects Surfers Paradise and the Nerang River and encourages enjoyment of the uniquely Gold Coast waterways.

The Masterplan identified a need for an upgraded river edge treatment in Appel Park. This provided an opportunity to redefine the edge of the river and to increase connectivity between the park and the river by improving pedestrian access to the water’s edge.

The built form was designed to be used in a variety of ways, including as a platform to sit alongside the river, as steps down towards the water’s edge, as a barrier to prevent falls into the river and the functional purpose of protecting the embankment from damage caused by wave or tidal action. The new river's edge was designed to take the eye to the water instead of detract from the river or impede the view.

The interlocking and staggered concrete blocks create aesthetic interest and seek to introduce colour to the river’s edge. The selected colour reinforces the colour of the Poinciana flowers in the park and also helps to provide visual contrast and therefore improved safety along the river edge.

Jury comments

This project takes a very constrained engineering brief and creates a successful way of bringing people to the edge of the river.

Within a limited budget the design adapts a modular unit that variously works as seat, fishing platform and stair, creating a varied way of interacting with the water. This project genuinely enhances the way that the park meets the river, offering a considered alternative to the more common revetment wall and boardwalk solution.

The jury strongly supported the overall design approach.

Tactical urbanism projects

Submitted by City Place Making, City of Gold Coast

Tactical Urbanism is an important part of City Place Making’s suite of urban design revitalisation programs. It offers small-scale, low-cost of around $25,000 to $150,000 permanent place making as well as incremental improvements that can be the first step in ongoing change, allowing places to be quickly and relatively easily refreshed.

Progressive change allows for simple, short-term changes taken from a place making master plan, to help retain community interest in the area and test ideas for future permanent changes.

This successful program is exemplified by the following completed projects:

  • Brisbane Road, Labrador
  • The Esplanade, Paradise Point
  • The Whistlestop Café, Pimpama
  • Chirn Park Shopping Centre.

Jury comments

This entry presents a series of projects that are low budget improvements to public spaces, procured over time. ‘Tactical urbanism’ typically seeks areas that can benefit from a ‘light touch’, implemented with imagination, to enrich urban environments.

The projects presented ranged from surface renewal and landscaping, to tree lighting, landscaping, seating and artwork installation. Tactical urbanism has a very important role to play in the suite of techniques to improve places, bringing joy, delight and amenity to the public realm, further encouraging occupation and enjoyment of city spaces.

The jury considers this program to be an important part of Gold Coast urbanism and applauds the Council and those involved for the ongoing investment in this approach.

Harbour Town extension

Submitted by The Buchan Group

Harbour Town is Australia’s largest outlet shopping destination. There are over 200 outlet retailers, plus a significant convenience retail precinct as well as other ancillary services and cinemas.

The location and layout of the new retail space in the northern extension has been carefully crafted to complement the existing customer flows within the centre. In particular, the addition opens up invitingly to the western carpark to encourage (with the help of new, site-wide signage) customers to use all the new car parking available. The main entry in this corner is marked by a large, canted, sculptural place-marker.

All the shopfronts are well shaded and the architectural forms of the awnings and facades continue as the eclectic feel of the original centre.

The ‘luxury precinct’ is an upgrade of part of the central north-south spine, where the pedestrian areas have been refurbished with a significantly higher level of materials and finishes.

The graphic design elements form an important part of the project. Way finding signage, tenants' shopfront signage and directory signs are essential to providing a good customer experience.

Jury comments

This project extends the current language and experience of the existing shopping centre, which is based on an ‘outdoor mall’ format.

The project offers a further refined palette of public space elements and shopfronts. Folded shade elements have been provided to add to pedestrian amenity. The new entry is created with vibrant facades.

St Hilda's School centenary wall

Submitted by Willemsen Architecture

The Centenary Wall is a commemorative community, art and landscape tribute to the 14,000 students and staff of St Hilda's School since its beginning in 1912.

The design stemmed from a concept sketch of one of the school's emblems, the ammonite, which is a fossilised mollusc.

Represented by a series of curved brick walls, reminiscent of an ammonite in plan, etched stainless steel panels hang off radiating low brick walls. There are 12 stainless steel panels etched with 14,000 names, catalogued by year of entry to the school.

The spiralling effect of the series of walls allows flow through the space, as well as room for pausing and conversation. The curved, tiered seating encourages the ongoing memory and use of the area as a lunch spot, music stand and intimate amphitheatre.

The project, itself, was realised largely through donations in services and materials, and included a vast array of passionate school staff and parents.

Jury comments

An intimately scaled place of which celebrates the school’s centenary has been created within the school grounds, making a new space of gathering and meaning as part of the day-to-day activities of the school.

The design is based on an ammonite, the school logo, framing a shade tree with curved brick walls, a seating stair and stainless steel panels. The panels are engraved with 14,000 names of former students. The resultant space is clearly enjoyed by students and marks an important milestone in the school’s history.

The Spit amenities block

Submitted by Gold Coast Waterways Authority and Ben Parker Architecture

The new amenities block at Doug Jennings Park, The Spit, is a piece of quality infrastructure that makes a valuable contribution to its site. Located on a formerly unloved part of the park, the structure signifies a new entry to the jetty and beach access.

The restrained, but elegant design displays an attention to scale, detail, materials and colour, that complement its harsh, but picturesque setting. In addition to showers and other amenities, it provides a rest and waiting area, with much needed shelter from the sun and rain in an otherwise open setting.

Since opening, the structure has proved to be a valuable and much loved facility for visitors and locals alike and has reaped more than the client imagined in public respect and minimal, if any, vandalism.

It demonstrates that quality architecture in the public realm fulfils more than a functional role. It telegraphs the message that the public are valued and are trusted to respect such a contribution to the public realm. It has therefore set the tone and benchmark for future park infrastructure and enhancements.

Jury comments

This project elevates the typology of the humble public toilet through a considered approach to the issues of robustness, vandalism, maintenance and safety, issues that often drive a mean and unpleasant building for humans to experience.

The detailing language forms a simple ‘kit of parts’ of frame and screen wrapping the more solid block work ‘core’. The architects have strongly advocated for a considered design approach, with the result that the building has been well received by the local community.

Surf Parade Place Making project

Submitted by City Place Making, City of Gold Coast

Enhancing a busy, but dated precinct, this major upgrade of Surf Parade, Broadbeach delivers a flexible dining and event space that will play a pivotal role during the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth GamesTM. Surf Parade is the ‘eat street’ in Broadbeach and the venue for numerous international events, including Blues on Broadbeach.

Identified for a major upgrade in the Broadbeach Core Business Precinct Master Plan, Surf Parade required significant new underground infrastructure including, stormwater with flush kerbs, upgrade of water main from asbestos to steel, new electrical, communications and data cabling, reconstructed roadway with compliant road and pedestrian lighting.

Key components include:

  • Improved adaptable space for major events by installing power sources for events and flush kerbs for better pedestrian safety and amenity.
  • Reduced vehicle dominance by narrowing road width, lowering speed limit and removing a slip lane at the northern end of the street.
  • Improved amenity and public safety with new street lighting, CCTV, and infrastructure ready for future digital technologies for the city.
  • Improved pedestrian amenity and safety with upgraded surfaces, wider footpaths, and larger areas of public space to allow for more outdoor dining.
  • Improved overall amenity by transplanting three, mature phoenix trees along the street, increased garden areas with new plantings and street furniture.

Jury comments

This project grows the public realm to suit increased occupation and activity, with extended footpaths, kerb-less streets treatment and narrowing of traffic lanes. Buses have been rerouted and street planting has been added.

The project provides a much-needed appropriate accommodation of pedestrian and dining areas in this busy urban precinct.

Sports science building Bond University

Submitted by BDA Architecture

Using the campus trademark sandstone and sporting graphics under a soaring elegant roof, this expressive new building provides Bond University with a powerful, new architectural statement and an efficient integration of new and existing facilities on a sloping site.

The elite sporting facility measures 2700 square metres and encompasses a gymnasium with state-of-the-art fitness equipment, three group exercise rooms, two beach volleyball courts, a spectacular function venue as well as change rooms and administration areas, with linkage pathways to the existing Olympic-size pool.

Jury comments

This building is a considered work of architecture comprising two pavilions either side of a linear green courtyard, with frontage overlooking a pre-existing pool. The building brings the sandstone language of the campus to the street.

The canopy roof creates a strong gesture of welcome to visitors, gathering and framing the entry, sandstone façade and art work screen which signals activities within.

Oasis Dental Palm Beach

Submitted by Clamroc Constructions

Oasis Dental at Palm Beach was an extremely satisfying project. The practitioners had a great vision for this centre and with a great collaboration of design and workmanship, they have delivered an exciting project which sets a new benchmark in this fast-growing industry and for the Palm Beach area and its community.

The challenge was to provide a much-needed service to the people of the Gold Coast, make it accessible and safe, make the centre feel more like a day spa than a surgery, all while satisfying the necessary dental and safety requirements.

Palm Beach is the new trendy hub on the Gold Coast and the Oasis Dental refurbishment cannot be missed. In keeping with the ‘Oasis’ name, the exterior was given a desert oasis feel. With its tasteful pine curves, garden feature stone teeth, wild landscape and creative lighting design, Palm Beach Oasis Dental has become an icon of the area.

Oasis Dental certainly came with its challenges and learning curves; however, the final result was one that all parties, including the surrounding café culture and community, are absolutely thrilled and impressed with.

Jury comments

Oasis Dental comprises a refurbishment of a corner building, with external treatments focusing on the lower floor. The exterior is wrapped with a slatted pine screen, forming a second skin that creates an interstitial zone for planting, conferring considerable amenity to surgeries within. The corner is marked with a graphic-layered concrete tooth sculpture, completing this light-hearted reworking of a corner building in Palm Beach’s emerging ‘cool’ precinct.

The Strand Coolangatta

Submitted by The Buchan Group

Along with Paradise Centre in Surfers Paradise and Oasis at Broadbeach, Showcase at Coolangatta was developed in the 1980s. The model provides a whole-of-block podium that includes retail, office and other associated uses, with residential towers above.

This project involves the re-branding of the podium – now The Strand - and significant changes to the Level 1 internal planning and the external areas facing Marine Parade and the beach. Coolangatta is a very tricky retail market. Local residents are older than other areas on the Gold Coast and tend to frequent the more traditional shopping centres in Tweed Heads. Holiday-makers have very different buying patterns – both in the size of their basket and the products.

This refurbishment looks to maximise the opportunities available in looking north over the beach as well as increasing numbers of retail customers. The main area of concern was the upper retail level that has been largely unoccupied for many years. A full-range Woolworths supermarket has been inserted into the back end of Level 1 to increase foot traffic to this level. The level 1 area facing Marine Parade is dedicated to food and beverage. The new façade is large-scale, openable glass louvres to maximise the views over the park and beach as well as allow natural ventilation of the space when weather conditions allow.

At ground level, the entries from Marine Parade have been upgraded and the connection to Level 1 strengthened. There is a new entry with escalator and stairs to create a direct link to the upper level from Marine Parade. Towards Griffith Street the two entries have been redesigned and targeted at ‘start up’ retail tenants offering a range of merchandise suited to the local community. The long-term health and vibrancy of our urban centres requires the constant re-imaging and upgrading of existing developments. This is at least as important as the insertion of new projections.

Jury comments

The Strand project comprises a reworking of a podium to create a more successful retail offer. The reworking includes ground level cafes and awnings, and a high level canopy framing two-storey entry spaces to the first floor.

The expert reshaping of first floor retail internally includes the reorientation of dining spaces to look through a glazed façade to the beach, providing an important connection to the street. The re-fit of the podium on both level reactivates the street, contributing to the overall liveliness of the precinct.

KDV Golf and Tennis Academy

Submitted by Shiro Architects and Grummitt Planning

The KDV Golf and Tennis Academy is the winner of the 2017 Queensland Institute of Architects award for commercial architecture.

It is less a private commercial development and more an important piece of social and sporting infrastructure for the city.

The Academy is part of a much larger vision of KDV Sport, which aims to create a top-class international sports training, accommodation and educational facility for primarily young individuals and teams both at professional and elite amateur levels.

Within the Gold Coast sporting inventory it is unique and will not only attract people from elsewhere to come and use it, but as a training facility for elite athletes, will create graduates who will be on the world stage, extolling the training and coaching excellence available on the Gold Coast.

Its potential ambassadorial value to the Gold Coast is invaluable, and already some of its coaching graduates, particularly in golf, are playing in PGA Tour events overseas as well as nationally.

These are young people coming through the program who are starting to make a name for themselves internationally and it is a great thing when they say we’re from the Gold Coast and this is where we got our training.

Jury comments

This elegant pavilion houses training facilities and associated amenities. The siting of the project responds directly to the pre-existing golf driving range.

The building presents a restrained colonnade to the car park, with a floating roof connecting inside and outside, highlighted by a shimmering reflective ceiling. Ovoid external ‘pods’ provide family picnic areas outside.

The jury appreciated this project as a very refined and well-detailed work of calming minimalist architecture.

Coomera Indoor Sports Centre

Submitted by BDA

The success of any public building can be judged by the usage and acceptance by the public. From day one, this building has been popular and almost fully booked by community and sporting groups. It addresses a latent demand by the growing Coomera community for first-class, flexible sporting facilities.

Further, the generous, flexible interior volumes ensure this facility will adapt to be one of the key sporting venues for the 2018 Commonwealth Games and future national and regional sporting events.

This new, multi-purpose facility accommodates a range of elite and community indoor sports such as netball, volleyball, futsal, gymnastics and basketball.

The venue has been designed to world-class competition standards. Key features of the venue design include a gymnastics arena and eight, mixed-use sports courts. This premium complex is designed to be highly versatile, allowing for a variety of events.

Jury comments

This project provides an important community facility to a rapidly developing part of the Gold Coast. A Commonwealth Games facility, the project is designed for flexible operations during both Games and legacy mode.

The architecture offers a robust, clear and neatly simple solution to its complex brief, elaborated by considered detailing. The ‘street spine’ on the eastern side of the building organises entrances and circulation, creating a transparent and naturally ventilated edge to the car park. The facility has provided an important focus for the local growing community.

Broadbeach Master Plan

Submitted by City Place Making, City of Gold Coast

A holistic precinct place making master plan for the Broadbeach Business Centre has been produced in consultation with the area’s business leaders and stakeholders and was noted in March 2016 and endorsed in August 2016.

Broadbeach Core Business Precinct is situated between the Gold Coast Highway and Old Burleigh Road, and from Queensland Avenue south to Elizabeth Avenue. Adjacent main destinations include the Gold Coast Convention Centre, The Star and Pacific Fair Shopping Centre.

Many of the challenges and way forward lie in maintaining the unique identity of Broadbeach as a family-oriented centre while improving transport, pedestrian mobility and providing infrastructure to develop and activate the streets.

The Master Plan aims to unlock the precinct’s potential and guide its transformation to become the city’s most vibrant and diverse beachside neighbourhood and business centre.

Small scale, incremental improvements at low cost, known as tactical urbanism, may be implemented as early action items out of a place based master plan, allowing quick, short-term changes to be made on the ground, keeping community interest and momentum, as well as testing ideas for future, permanent changes.

Jury comments

Public realm master planning is a key tool for ensuring a coherent and considered series of people friendly spaces are made in the city. This master plan focuses strongly on streets, public spaces and streetscapes, providing a strong context analysis for proposals as a platform for a master plan that seeks to maintain unique characteristics of Broadbeach whilst addressing its streetscape challenges.

The result is a skilled and coherent master plan which, when implemented, will improve the urban quality of Broadbeach.

Ruby and Sapphire

Submitted by DBI

Ruby and Sapphire are two, integrated urban renewal projects comprised of six towers accommodating 2615 apartments, an ice skating rink, amusement facilities, a supermarket, shops, restaurants and bars.

They will activate two blocks via their frontages and new cross-block links, creating a highly pedestrianised environment. The projects build on the knowledge gained through the design, delivery and post-occupancy evaluation of Oracle Boulevard in Broadbeach.

Ruby will replace the existing family orientated ‘Paradise Resort’ with four towers of 30 to 59 storeys to provide 1615 apartments and recreational facilities. Ruby is an up-scale version of the ’Paradise Resort’, with the same family-orientated values and attractions for guests and visitors that will be shared with the local community.

Sapphire adjoins and complements Ruby by providing a luxury apartment offer. Comprised of two towers of 32 and 72-storeys, Sapphire will accommodate 1000 apartments with recreational facilities, a shop and community centre. Both projects share an integrated urban design strategy, providing a civic focus for the undifferentiated suburban context by creating high quality pedestrian/community urban spaces with excellent connectivity to the adjoining streets.

The integrated projects provide intimate, intermediate and large scale public spaces to support a rich and dynamic public domain.

Jury comments

This unbuilt project design comprises the redevelopment of two significantly scaled sites within Surfers Paradise.

The site master planning strategy interlinks the sites with a shared zone, providing pathways of pedestrian movement across both blocks. The pathway links new green spaces within the sites.

The podium is designed to mitigate the scale of the towers whilst providing human scale and variety to the street. Key corners are addressed and street fronts activated with a range of uses including lower scale residential typologies. Tower heights vary to create transitions in scale. The urban design strategies are clearly a strong consideration within the overall master planning of the sites.

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