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Cube Shapes Plans for Sunshine Coast Employment Hub by Renee McKeown

Cube Developments is honing in on the Sunshine Coast’s biggest employment hub, selling out one apartment tower and drafting up plans for another.

The Sunshine Coast developer has created a $265-million portfolio in the growth suburb of Birtinya near the Sunshine Coast University Hospital and Stockland’s $830-million Birtinya Town Centre masterplan.

It comes as demand continues to surge on the back of the holiday hotspot among the nation’s most popular locations for tourists, renters and remote workers.

The first of three towers at Seasons by Cube sold out, recording $40 million in sales in six months, translating at 54 two- and three-bedroom apartments in an eight-storey tower designed by Cottee Parker.

The 148-apartment project on a 6000sq m site at 1 Prosperity Drive, Birtinya is one of many in the largely undeveloped suburb between Mooloolaba and Caloundra.

Cube recently also picked up four super lots with 9000sq m in November at Cardinal Place and is drafting plans to build 245 apartments on the site.

▲ Large scale projects are ramping up on the largely undeveloped sites surrounding the Sunshine Coast University Hospital.

Cube director Scott Juniper said that quite quickly the region was becoming very attractive following the pandemic.

“It hasn’t changed the buyer profile, there’s just a lot more volume,” Juniper said.

“Since everyone has been working from home, a lot of employers realise that actually people can still hit KPIs and are probably happier.

“I started developing in the precinct 10 years ago and now Stockland have limited land opportunities down there.

“There’s a lot of interest from many multiple development companies to come into the precinct.”

Unprecedented housing demand has driven the region into a land shortage with some developers looking to build higher-density projects to overcome this.

Rental vacancies hit 0.5 per cent in December and have hovered around that mark since the pandemic began, down from about 2 per cent across 2019 and the early stages of 2020.

This compared to the Gold Coast at 0.6 per cent and Brisbane at 1.8 per cent.

The Sunshine Coast also ranked in top position in the Tourism Sentiment Index of 100 global places last week, ahead of the Whitsundays, Udaipur Rajasthan in India and Bora Bora in French Polynesia.

Nearby and on a similar scale, Habitat lodged plans for a $150-million development with 200 apartments across two, eight-storey buildings.

▲ Nearly 10 kilometres of Birtinya is Kings Beach where medium density developments continue to rise including Citimax's Ocean Verge.

Citimax Property Group was also moving ahead with an eight-storey tower with 40 apartments at 27 Verney Street, Kings Beach on a 1416sq m block. The Brisbane developer made slight adjustments to the 2015 approved plans and construction was under way on the site after launching the project last year by Gibson Architects—and is reporting strong sales.

In September, Toowoomba’s Wagner family lodged plans for a 182-room hotel in Mooloolaba on an old car park site.


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