Draft City Plan amendment: The Spit Master Plan implementation (key development sites)

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The Spit Master Plan (Master Plan) was released by State Government in May 2019 following a comprehensive 18-month process, including extensive input from our community.

As work commences to implement projects under the Master Plan, the State Government is leading a program to lease State-owned land, unlocking economic opportunities and enhancing the recreational offering at The Spit.

To ensure any future development aligns with the Master Plan, the City of Gold Coast, under direction from the State Government, is proposing updates to the Gold Coast City Plan.

You are encouraged to have your say on the proposed updates between 21 May 2020 and 19 June 2020.

You can find the amendment and supporting information on the City of Gold Coast website, or make a formal submission via the City Plan submissions portal.

While it’s a challenging time for our city, it’s important that we continue working on and talking about projects that will benefit our city.

So we’re changing the way we engage with our community and have found new, simple ways that you can connect with us on the things that matter to you. Simply Ask a Planner below or contact us on our planning hotline.

The Spit Master Plan (Master Plan) was released by State Government in May 2019 following a comprehensive 18-month process, including extensive input from our community.

As work commences to implement projects under the Master Plan, the State Government is leading a program to lease State-owned land, unlocking economic opportunities and enhancing the recreational offering at The Spit.

To ensure any future development aligns with the Master Plan, the City of Gold Coast, under direction from the State Government, is proposing updates to the Gold Coast City Plan.

You are encouraged to have your say on the proposed updates between 21 May 2020 and 19 June 2020.

You can find the amendment and supporting information on the City of Gold Coast website, or make a formal submission via the City Plan submissions portal.

While it’s a challenging time for our city, it’s important that we continue working on and talking about projects that will benefit our city.

So we’re changing the way we engage with our community and have found new, simple ways that you can connect with us on the things that matter to you. Simply Ask a Planner below or contact us on our planning hotline.

Do you have questions about the proposed amendment? Post your question in the public forum and one of our planners will be in contact with you shortly.

Prefer a private discussion? Please contact us via our planning hotline 1300 151 267 or CityPlanSubmissions@goldcoast.qld.gov.au

Please be aware submitted questions and responses are available for public view. Please refer to our Terms of UsePrivacy Policy and Moderation Guidelines before posting.

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    Is the marine stadium, seagrass fish breeding habitat, remaining intact ?

    Bronny asked about 13 hours ago

    This scope is limited to the key development sites south of Sea World to support the State Government’s site release program and to ensure that future development opportunities on those sites align with the Master Plan.  Marine stadium is not included in this amendment package.

    Strategic Urban and Regional Planning Team
    City Planning
    City of Gold Coast

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    Your link to GCCC website does not reveal the amendment - why is it so hard to find (I looked through all sections, and none included 'amendment' in the title; why is it not here on this page instead)? Regarding this hidden amendment and future developments, The Spit Master Plan consultation also effectively hid/buried the idea of a CST in jargon and pretty pictures, without options for the public to say/vote NO to a CST (as we have fought for and won over decades now). Understandably, the public is suspicious about the deceit and secrecy between GCCC and State Government. It is clear and obvious that those in power, against the express interests and wishes of the people, still intend to use the current implementation and associated development to further this CST agenda. With this understanding, I ask a planner: Does this amendment allow for height limits above 3 stories in violation of the City Plan? How will leasing state-owned land enhance recreation when it will increase usage and built environments? When will the government's previous commitment to grant the Spit to the people in perpetuity be realised, with Phillip Park protected as open public recreation space?

    BornGC74 asked 7 days ago

    We are sorry you experienced some difficulties accessing the amendment package. The amendment package can be reached by clicking the ‘Amendment and supporting information’ within the ‘Resources’ box of our GC Have Your Say website (https://www.gchaveyoursay.com.au/thespitkeydevelopmentsites). Alternatively, you can follow this link: https://www.goldcoast.qld.gov.au/supporting-documents-for-the-spit-master-plan-implementation-53994.html

    This amendment does not allow for building height to exceed three-storeys and 15 metres. The Queensland government recently imposed a three-storey height limit for development within The Spit building height control area (as mapped in the Planning Regulation 2017). Development that has a building height greater than three storeys or 15 metres will be prohibited development, unless the development is for an outdoor theme park ride at Sea World; or the maintenance, repair or replacement of an existing, lawfully constructed building or structure. A development application cannot be submitted for prohibited development. 

    This amendment package is one of many implementation actions of the Master Plan.  This amendment package is limited to sites that are part of the State Government’s site release program (key development sites).  These sites were identified in the Master Plan as areas that were appropriate for development.  It does not include Philip Park, which is the location of a potential cruise ship terminal, as identified in The Spit Master Plan.  The changes will ensure that the future usage of these key development sites aligns to what the community told the Queensland Government they wanted to see as part of the Master Plan. For more information regarding how The Spit Master Plan is being implemented by the Queensland Government, please visit: https://www.statedevelopment.qld.gov.au/infrastructure/the-spit-master-plan-implementation.html

    Kind regards,

    Strategic Urban and Regional Planning Team
    City Planning
     City of Gold Coast

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    Sorry - having a very hard time trying to track the info down via your links - could you please provide for t links and a summary that clearly difines current and proposed- thanks. Also - what is being done about the Helicopters in such close vicinity to everyone and the noise, and black fallout over the boats and condos and housing;and Overly frequent flights ( It’s been lovely without them). - can their flight paths please be changed and have them moved - a lot has changed over 30 years of operation , the increase in tourism and increased housing development.

    Angela Sparrow asked 2 days ago

    We are sorry you experienced some difficulties accessing the amendment package. The fact sheets offer a summary of the changes in the amendment. The amendment package and factsheets can be reached by clicking the ‘Amendment and supporting information’ or any of the factsheets within the ‘Resources’ box of our GC Have Your Say website (https://www.gchaveyoursay.com.au/thespitkeydevelopmentsites). Alternatively, you can follow this link: https://www.goldcoast.qld.gov.au/supporting-documents-for-the-spit-master-plan-implementation-53994.html

    This City Plan amendment does not relate to land on which existing helicopter services are located (e.g. Sea World, Marina Mirage) and will not affect the operations of existing, lawful land uses. 

    The scope of this City Plan amendment is limited to the key development sites to support the State Government’s site release program and to ensure that future development opportunities on those sites align with the Master Plan. It introduces a new area “The Spit tourism area” into the Strategic framework to set clear intentions for future development in this area. To protect the amenity of The Spit tourism area and surrounds, air services (including helicopter services) are not envisaged within The Spit tourism area. Additionally, air services are proposed to be an impact assessable land use within The Spit tourism area. This means that any development application for helicopter services would need to undergo public notification. 

    Kind regards,

    Strategic Urban and Regional Planning Team
    City Planning
    City of Gold Coast

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    When there was a big bush fire opposite Seaworld a couple of years ago my family were stuck in a traffic gridlock on Seaworld Drive for almost two hrs with fire spreading and nowhere to go. When the big hail storm came last year we were stuck in traffic trying to get out of Seaworld Drive for half an hr while the large hail stones battered our car. On a public holiday we queued for over an hour just to get out of the car park at the spit onto Seaworld Drive then another forty five minutes traffic jam along Seaworld Drive.. As there is only one way in and out of the spit what improvements will be made to get everybody out off Seaworld drive quickly in case of an emergency i.e. fire/storm?

    Debbie Perrin asked 4 days ago

    Our priority is to ensure that we have the transport infrastructure, sustainable travel options and traffic flow solutions in place to support the city’s continued productivity and growth. 

    The $34 million Sundale Bridge and Waterways Drive Upgrade will increase network capacity and improve traffic flow along the popular route connecting The Spit to Southport. We’re making these improvements in the heart of the Gold Coast so you can spend less time on the road, and more time enjoying our beautiful city. 

    Currently, drivers are experiencing delays of up to 35 minutes travelling from The Spit to Southport during peak times. Without intervention, by 2041 peak travel time is expected to increase to around two hours. Once the project is delivered, it’s projected that trips from The Spit to Southport will take around eight minutes during peak times.

    The upgrade includes:

    • Upgrading the Gold Coast Highway to a continuous three lane northbound road from Tedder Avenue through to Ada Bell Way. This includes demolishing the old pedestrian path on the Sundale Bridge to provide a third northbound lane. 
    • Adding a third southbound lane on the Gold Coast Highway from Waterways Drive to Tedder Avenue.
    • Adding a third right-turn lane from Waterways Drive onto Gold Coast Highway.
    • Extending the second eastbound lane on Waterways Drive through to the Seaworld Drive intersection.
    • Adding a signalised pedestrian crossing on Macarthur Parade (near the Southport Yacht Club). 
    • Upgrading the Main Beach Parade and Waterways Drive intersection.
    • Changing the Macarthur Parade and Seaworld Drive roundabout to a signalised T-intersection


    For further information about the project visit the website, you can also sign up to receive updates straight to your inbox.

    Kind regards,

    Strategic Urban and Regional Planning Team
    City Planning
    City of Gold Coast

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    How do we stop greedy developers and/or know when it is enough and when to stop.. So do you not think The Spit is something we should preserve and not make it look like everywhere else? Can we not learn from previous mistakes where rules/agreements/contacts etc where amended/changed to suit someone that doesn't think environmentally sufficient and not ruin our heritage or that of our childrens? Look wh

    zoe richmond asked 10 days ago

    We asked our colleagues at the State and they have advised that The Queensland Government in partnership with Gold Coast Waterways and the City of Gold Coast undertook an 18-month consultation process with the community and stakeholders to produce The Spit Master Plan (Master Plan). The community helped shape the Master Plan through more than 23,000 pieces of feedback received during the master planning process, and conversations with thousands of people at pop-up sessions and other events.

    The Master Plan is guided by the following vision which will continue to guide the implementation to the Spit Master Plan.

    Future generations will value The Spit as a place that:

    • Is renowned as a destination that exemplifies a harmonious balance between tourism, recreation, leisure experiences and the environment.
    • Connects the community and visitors with the landscape and marine environment.
    • Protects and enhances its natural assets and coastal parkland. 


    This proposed amendment by the City of Gold Coast to the Gold Coast City Plan (City Plan) is one of many implementation actions of the Mater Plan.  The proposed City Plan amendment is limited in scope to four key development sites south of SeaWorld and specifically addresses the Ministerial Direction issued by the Honourable Cameron Dick, Treasurer, Minister for Infrastructure and Planning under section 26 of the Planning Act 2016. These sites were identified in the Master Plan as areas that were appropriate for development.  The changes will ensure that the future usage of these sites aligns to what the community told the Queensland Government they wanted to see as part of the Master Plan. You can find a map of these sites here - https://www.gchaveyoursay.com.au/thespitkeydevelopmentsites

    Importantly, the proposed amendment will not change the City Plan policy relating to building height as the Queensland Government has imposed a three-storey height limit on future development on The Spit so anything above this height limit will be prohibited development. Further, the proposed amendment includes specific design and land use outcomes that reflect the unique qualities of The Spit and feedback received during the Master Plan process. This is achieved through an overlay code and zone precincts which is specific to the amendment area, and includes the protection of land from development, to allow for the delivery of public realm elements, such as the Broadwalk and Plaza.

    For further information on how the Spit Master Plan is being implemented by the Queensland Government please visit http://www.dsdmip.qld.gov.au/infrastructure/the-spit-master-plan-implementation.html.

    Kind regards,

    Strategic Urban and Regional Planning Team
    City Planning
    City of Gold Coast

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    The biggest frustration I have is that we will be losing so much public space that is open to everyone today, and instead will have areas walled off for commercial purposes or other uses that mean that the wonderful resource we have today will no longer be all available without spending cash in the future. Why not focus on purely public improvements instead of selling off our public resource to the highest bidders?

    rsmartin11 asked 8 days ago

    We have asked our colleagues at the Queensland Government and they have advised that the proposed amendment does not remove any public open space areas within the Spit. The proposed amendment will actually result in an increase in publicly accessible areas. This is achieved through an overlay code and zone precincts which is specific to the amendment area. It includes the protection of land from development, to allow for the delivery of public realm elements, such as a boardwalk and plaza.

    The Queensland Government is currently undertaking a range of public improvements on the Spit. For further information on how the Spit Master Plan is being implemented by the Queensland Government please visit http://www.dsdmip.qld.gov.au/infrastructure/the-spit-master-plan-implementation.html.

    Kind regards,

    Strategic Urban and Regional Planning Team
    City Planning
    City of Gold Coast

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    Q.1Have materials been considered for walkways parks and open spaces infrastructure for the spit development Masterplan Q.2 Please outline the process and the timing for expressions of interest for materials for Walkways , Parks and open spaces Infrastructure for the Spit Development Masterplan

    Robert A asked 7 days ago

    The design and construction of public infrastructure projects are outside the scope of this City Plan amendment, which focuses on how the City regulates development within four precincts south of Sea World, to align with The Spit Master Plan. The Queensland Government is leading implementation of the Master Plan and is currently undertaking a range of public improvements on the Spit. For further information on how the Spit Master Plan is being implemented by the Queensland Government, please visit http://www.dsdmip.qld.gov.au/infrastructure/the-spit-master-plan-implementation.html

    Kind regards,

    Strategic Urban and Regional Planning Team
    City Planning
    City of Gold Coast

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    What is the plan for the VMR Southport Base just North of Seaworld Nara which (it is understood) is leased from the QLD Government

    Peter T asked 10 days ago

    This amendment only relates to four precincts south of Sea World. It does not include the VMR Southport base north of Sea World. The Spit Master Plan identifies that VMR is to remain in Muriel Henchman Park. The Queensland Government is leading implementation of the Master Plan and is currently undertaking a range of public improvements on the Spit. For further information on how the Spit Master Plan is being implemented by the Queensland Government please visit http://www.dsdmip.qld.gov.au/infrastructure/the-spit-master-plan-implementation.html

    Kind regards,

    Strategic Urban and Regional Planning Team
    City Planning
    City of Gold Coast

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    According to information contained within the Spit Master Plan the plan aims to ensure "the protection and enhancement of public open spaces" and provide "up to 800 new, short-term accommodation rooms and vibrant community spaces and outstanding natural areas." The tourism helicopter services operating from Marina Mirage and Seaworld (and possibly from adjacent to Southport Yacht Club) are totally inconsistent with the overall stated objectives. I appreciate they are a part of the tourism industry but their location is completely at odds with the nature of the environment and community amenity planned. The noise intrusion created through the Spit, Biggera Waters and Labrador (which are now zoned for higher density) and surrounding suburbs of Southport and Main Beach is already unacceptable (pre-COVID-19). Will these businesses be relocated to sites which are not hubs for a peaceful environment like the Spit and the existing and planned adjacent accommodation? Similarly, will future business activites be required to meet noise abatement standards in harmony with the objectives of the Spit Master Plan?

    Roley asked 8 days ago

    This City Plan amendment does not relate to land on which existing helicopter services are located (e.g. Sea World, Marina Mirage). The amendment introduces a new area “The Spit tourism area” into the Strategic framework to set clear intentions for future development in this area. To protect the amenity of The Spit tourism area and surrounds, air services (including helicopter services) are not envisaged within The Spit tourism area. Additionally, air services are proposed to be an impact assessable land use within The Spit tourism area. This means that any development application for helicopter services would need to undergo public notification. 

    Kind regards,

    Strategic Urban and Regional Planning Team
    City Planning
    City of Gold Coast

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    When will the City of Gold Coast cancel the idea of the cruise ship terminal? Do you need to spend more money on knowing that it won't work at Philip Park? How about cleaning that area up with a better toilet block and increased lighting so it's safer. thanks

    Jesse Outram asked 9 days ago

    This amendment package only includes sites that are part of the State Government’s site release program (key development sites). It does not include Philip Park, which is the location of a potential cruise ship terminal, as identified in The Spit Master Plan.

    For more information regarding The Spit Master Plan and Philip Park please visit: https://www.statedevelopment.qld.gov.au/infrastructure/the-spit-master-plan-implementation.html

    Kind regards,

    Strategic Urban and Regional Planning Team
    City Planning
    City of Gold Coast

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    why not put an extra south turning lane of the Sundale bridge. On really busy days it can take over 40 mins from Southport to the bridge. Once around the corner it's not bad that at all. The turning lane at the moment is a nightmare. If there was one that started back before the bridge near the lights it would flow so much easier.

    sonyah72 asked 10 days ago

    The City is currently undertaking a $34 million Sundale Bridge and Waterways Drive Upgrade to increase network capacity and improve traffic flow along the popular route connecting Main Beach and Southport. The Sundale Bridge and Waterways Drive Upgrade aims to increase network capacity for trips from The Spit to Southport to meet current demand and reduce peak travel time. The upgrade is scheduled to complete in late 2021.

    Our priority is to ensure that we have the transport infrastructure, sustainable travel options and traffic flow solutions in place to support the city’s continued productivity and growth. 

    Currently, drivers heading northbound are experiencing delays of up to 35 minutes travelling from The Spit to Southport during peak times. Without intervention, by 2041 peak travel time is expected to increase to around two hours. 

    Once the Sundale Bridge and Waterways Drive Upgrade is delivered, it’s projected that trips from The Spit to Southport will take around eight minutes during peak times. 

    The additional lane on the bridge is northbound as:

    • it is a critical part of the capacity improvements aimed at clearing traffic faster off Waterways Drive to reduce peak travel times for trips from The Spit to Southport 
    • northbound traffic volumes are higher than southbound for most of the day.


    We’re improving southbound traffic by:

    • Allowing more green time for southbound drivers on the Gold Coast Highway: clearing northbound traffic faster off Waterways Drive enables us to allocate more green time for cars heading south on the Gold Coast Highway. This will help to keep southbound traffic moving.
    • Removing the merge on the Gold Coast Highway between Waterways Drive and Tedder Avenue: we’re adding a third southbound lane on the Gold Coast Highway between Waterways Drive and Tedder Avenue. This removes the merge and improves traffic flow by providing three continuous southbound lanes from the bridge through to Tedder Avenue. 
    • Removing the merge on Waterways Drive (eastbound): extending the second eastbound lane from mid-Waterways Drive through to the Seaworld Drive intersection provides two continuous eastbound lanes along this route. Removing the merge will help keep eastbound traffic moving and reduce delays for drivers turning left into Waterways Drive from the Gold Coast Highway.


    For more information on the Sundale Bridge and Waterways Drive Upgrade, please visit: https://www.goldcoast.qld.gov.au/sundale-bridge-and-waterways-drive-upgrade-49392.html 

    Kind regards,

    Strategic Urban and Regional Planning Team
    City Planning
    City of Gold Coast

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    After the problems this year with the covid-19 a Terminal would be the biggest waste of money spent. Like our major hasn't spent a fortune already being rejected by so many people

    sonyah72 asked 10 days ago

    This amendment package only includes sites that are part of the State Government’s site release program (key development sites). It does not include Philip Park, which is the location of a potential cruise ship terminal, as identified in The Spit Master Plan.

    Kind regards,

    Strategic Urban and Regional Planning Team
    City Planning
    City of Gold Coast

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    The navel cadet land parcel during the Spit Master Plan was included in the Marine Industry Precinct. This makes sense as the water parcel would not be able to be used because of the Southport Yacht Club Lease area.

    Brett James asked 10 days ago

    Thank you for your feedback. The rationale behind the proposed zoning is documented in Section 3.2 of our background report, and is available in the supporting documents: https://www.goldcoast.qld.gov.au/documents/bf/Attachment-D-Redacted_Part1.pdf

    In relation to this specific site, during preliminary state interest review of the draft amendment, it was requested that this site be included in The Spit southern tourism precinct to allow for flexibility in the delivery of these sites.

    If you would like to make a formal submission, please visit https://www.gchaveyoursay.com.au/thespitkeydevelopmentsites

    Kind regards,

    Strategic Urban and Regional Planning Team
    City Planning
    City of Gold Coast

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    Not sure if my email was sent before? Build a cafe /restaurant with great water views, also a bus should go to Doug Jennings park ,not all people have transportation. Regards Peter

    pekay21 asked 14 days ago

    The Spit Master Plan was released by the State Government in May 2019 following a comprehensive 18-month master planning process with extensive consultation. Feedback received from the community guided and informed the preparation of The Spit Master Plan.  Suggestions such as locations of cafes and transport options were discussed during this time.

    This draft City Plan amendment has been prepared in accordance with a Ministerial direction and focuses on ensuring that development outcomes for key development sites are consistent with the Master Plan.

    You can find more information on The Spit Master Plan here: https://www.statedevelopment.qld.gov.au/infrastructure/the-spit-master-plan-implementation.html

    Kind regards,

    Strategic Urban and Regional Planning Team
    City Planning
    City of Gold Coast