Caloundra main street among Queensland’s best designs

Sunshine Coast Council

Bulcock Street Caloundra was one of the finest examples of urban design on display at the Australian Institute of Landscape Architects (AILA) 2021 awards this month.

Caloundra Main Street Urban Revitalisation project was awarded the Urban Design and Regional Achievement Awards at the 2021 Queensland Landscape Architecture Awards (20 June 2021).

Sunshine Coast Council Division 2 Councillor Terry Landsberg said the project was pitted against a field of quality urban design projects across the state.

“AILA Queensland received a record number of 81 submissions from high calibre landscape architects showcasing exceptional design from the Gold Coast, Brisbane, Cairns, Central Queensland and the Fraser Coast,” Cr Landsberg said.

“This project was Australia’s first smart city streetscape. The revitalisation project has transformed a regional main street into a re-energised precinct on the Sunshine Coast through the use of the catenary lighting, public art installations and opening up the main street to be more pedestrian friendly.

“Bulcock Street was established more than 100 years ago and this main street revitalisation is a timely initiative to restore economic currency to the precinct.

“The jury’s citation at the awards said the project established a point of difference to other new urban centres, and also supported a region under increased pressure from population growth.

“While good quality design is important, it’s the journey getting there. That’s why I’m pleased to see council’s Placemaking and Design team approached the community and listened to concerns around the project and addressed them in a real way. That’s what an inclusive community is all about.”

Sunshine Coast Council Manager Design and Placemaking Sarah Chalkley said the Sunshine Coast was making its mark as a region for high quality design.

“This project brings to life one of the oldest streets on the Sunshine Coast and with it economic, social and environmental benefits for the community to enjoy years from now,” Ms Chalkley said.

“Scooping up state accolades highlights how the design of the main street connected with the outdoors, featured play through discovery, enacted outstanding community engagement, and delivered sustainable place-based design solutions for future generations.

“It also highlights the critical role of good urban design in shaping our region. On top of receiving the AILA awards, the Sunshine Coast Design book, also known as the ‘yellow book’ won a Commendation in the Minister’s Award for Urban Design last week (Tuesday 22 June, 2021).

“These awards acknowledge how council is challenging the status quo with good design to educate, inspire and raise awareness of the value of good design and how to achieve place-based design to help protect and enhance all that is loved on the Sunshine Coast.”

AILA Queensland President David Uhlmann said the awards recipients demonstrated a commitment to communities in their response to the needs of an increasingly growing population, creating natural and built form environments which prioritised the community’s health.

“The last 12 months have seen a spotlight shine on the quality and quantity of our public realm,” Mr Uhlmann said.

“Cities around the world have been re-assessing the allocation of public space in response to changing use patterns necessitated by COVID-19.

“Many of the projects showcased in our awards program this year show the lead role that landscape architects have in designing these places for people.

“This year’s winners have set inspiring examples, putting the surrounding community at the forefront of the planning and execution, to create inclusive and liveable spaces that encourage and support human interaction even during the toughest of times.

AILA Queensland Award of Excellence and Landscape Architecture Award winners will gain automatic entry into National AILA Awards, to be held later this year followed by the International Landscape Architecture Festival.

To read the full jury citations on the Urban Design Landscape Architecture Award and Regional Achievement Award please visit 2021 QLD Winners Gallery. To learn more about good quality design, download the ‘Yellow Book‘ on council’s website.

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