As the Gold Coast’s Central Business District, Southport has a reputation as a dynamic hub of business, investment and an enviable coastal lifestyle. Since its designation as a Priority Development Area four years ago, proposed developments in the area have surged to the tune of over $13 billion.
It was lights – camera -action as The New York Film Academy moved into the CBD three months ago and there are more boutique and cosmopolitan commercial projects blooming. Australia Fair West underwent a $15 million revamp last year, spawning new bars and restaurants, and injecting more verve into the CBD’s nightlife experience. The EQC team recently took a visit to Swannies, to affectionately remember the former Westpac Bank location now turned trendy bar, complete with a pink neon bar, that had a “cocktails and dreams” vibe.
Among the latest news on CBD development is the release by the Gold Coast City of a tender seeking a creator for a master plan at Nerang Street. John Howe, Committee for Southport chairman, said that the master plan was “going to be looking at the heritage and cultural aspects of Nerang St.” Could we be seeing the National Trust step into the space? The master plan proposes spending around $100,000 for a single street in Southport.
Southport has traditionally attracted a broad demographic of residents not just for its CBD but also for its schools and university campus. Jobs in the city are predicted to grow to 60,000 by 2036. According to realestate.com.au, median property rent for a three bedroom unit is $450 per week (June ’17 figures). With the Commonwealth Games due next year and the commitment to development by the government and private sector, the CBD’s potential is being utilised to the maximum and its future looks promising.