EXCLUSIVE: Jamieson reveals plan for connected community
A HI-TECH community with a higher household income that is in tune with the environment and doing business with the world.
That's how the future Sunshine Coast looks in Mayor Mark Jamieson's mind's eye.
Cr Jamieson hopes to transform a region traditionally heavily reliant on tourism into a diverse economy with technology, health and green-tech sectors the beacons guiding the Coast's path to prosperity.
Intensified development looks to be focused within the Maroochydore, Mooloolaba and Caloundra hubs and the enterprise corridor from Caloundra South to the Sunshine Coast Airport, catering to the future population growth and providing housing options for modern families, choosing what Cr Jamieson described as a "different style of housing".
"We'll go into this new council with a lot of momentum on our side," he said.
With no organisational review or de-amalgamation to sidetrack them, Cr Jamieson said councillors and executive staff would continue to deliver essential services while bringing major regional projects to fruition.
He spoke with pride at the work done by him and his team of councillors and the backing they'd received, as voters looked like reinstating all sitting councillors, with the exception of Divisiuon Four where John Connolly looks set to replace retiring Deputy Mayor Chris Thompson.
"That's a bit of a rarity (to have a full council re-elected)," Cr Jamieson said.
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Pushing for a more prosperous economy while preserving the environment was a juggling act but Cr Jamieson said it was critical.
"I believe council is responsible for providing a lot of important services but it's also a very big business and it needs to be managed like a very big business to benefit our shareholders who are ultimately our ratepayers," he said.
He acknowledged the role of local governments had evolved beyond roads, rates and rubbish.
"We still have those basic, core responsibilities," he said. "Nobody else can do on the Sunshine Coast the sort of detailed planning the council can do."
That detailed planning included a raft of big-ticket projects set to change the face of the Sunshine Coast.
A light rail network servicing the coastal spine as well as the $347m Sunshine Coast Airport expansion, Valdora Solar Farm and the $300m Maroochydore CBD have all been promoted as vital to the Coast progressing.
He also pointed to the sub sea internet cable as a massive catalyst for the region's business capabilities.
"In 15-20 years we will see all of those projects reaching fruition," he said. "We'll be transacting business with the rest of the world."
The former media chief executive said the Coast should be looked at by other tiers of government as a model of the future, leading the way in creating diverse and flexible economies.
"I want to see household incomes on the Sunshine Coast at least at the state average," he said.
"We need to embrace technology and health and wellbeing sectors... which will guarantee much better paying jobs on the Sunshine Coast."
Should improving job prospects and average incomes be part of the role of local government?
This poll ended on 27 March 2016.
Yes. If they can make a difference to those aspects they should.
No. Councils should be focussed on providing basic services to rate-payers.
It's a changing world - as long as councils can meet their basic responsibilities they can reach for other things too.
This is not a scientific poll. The results reflect only the opinions of those who chose to participate.
But what of the future for Mooloolaba, one of the most important tourism destinations the region boasts?
Re-establishing it as the jewel in the Coast's tourism crown while also establishing a more permanent resident base loom as crucial parts of the plans.
"The master planning that council's done is clearly seeking to establish Mooloolaba as a major tourism node," Cr Jamieson said.
"There'll certainly be more apartments. We need more of a permanent population in Mooloolaba to a certain extent to support businesses in the off-season."
He said redevelopment of the Wharf site and maximising use of the harbour were also important aspects to any plans for the iconic beachside suburb.
"We want to free up that foreshore area," he said.
As to the potential for a large-scale resort on the Wharf site with direct access to the beach, Cr Jamieson said while current planning did not reflect that, any backward glance would show vast changes to Mooloolaba over the past 50 years.
Thank you Sunshine Coast. Now we get on with the job of shaping a great future. Cheers— Cr Mark Jamieson (@JamiesonMark) March 20, 2016
A VOTE FOR MARK JAMIESON
EIGHT COMMUNITIES WHERE Mark Jamieson scored more than 70% of the vote:
- Buderim Central: 74.95%
- Buderim North: 70.41%
- Buderim South: 70.49%
- Buderim Pines: 78.01%
- Sippy Downs: 70.91%
- Alexandra Headland: 70.75%
- Minyama: 70.71%
- Mountain Creek South: 75%
EIGHT COMMUNITIES WHERE Mark Jamieson scored less than 50% of the vote.
- Conondale: 37.11%
- Coolum North: 41.31%
- Eumundi: 45.04%
- Coolum: 47.02%
- Mudjimba: 48.27%
- Mt Coolum: 48.63%
- Witta: 48.83%
- Maleny: 49.87%