Cr Thompson - Kawana Town Centre starts to take shape
  • Friday 31 January 2014

The Kawana Town Centre development is really starting to take shape with construction work on services now started. This area will be a key economic driver for the next three years.

Meanwhile, the new Sunshine Coast Council is also taking shape and we are looking forward to moving ahead in a very positive way.

We’ve come through a very difficult transition phase with the de-amalgamation of Noosa, but we’ve been overwhelmed by the support of our community during this period.

I’m looking forward to working with residents, business leaders and the community as together we take the Sunshine Coast to the next level.

Positive signs for our economy

I was really pleased to see the latest construction figures which show the regional economy is heading in the right direction.

The Coast’s construction approvals and associated building values increased by 52% and 60% respectively throughout 2013. New building values, estimated at $177 million in the January-March 2013 quarter, increased to more than $283 million by the October-December 2013 quarter.

The number of construction approvals increased from 1035 to 1575 over the same period

While council has introduced numerous measures to increase confidence in the building industry, such as scrapping pre-lodgement fees for discussion on potential development applications and reducing other charges, we can only do so much.

For things to really improve in terms of building opportunities, we need the banks to start lending funds to property developers and we need other levels of government to consider ways in which they can help these approvals actually rise from the ground.

These figures are reassuring and are a very positive start to 2014.

This column first appeared in Kawana Weekly on January 30, 2014