Northern Beaches Community Hub

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PROJECT UPDATE:
In January 2024, the tender was awarded for stage 1A of Northern Beaches Community Hub. Click here to learn more.

Civil works began on the site in November, 2022.


The Northern Beaches Community Hub will be a welcoming local meeting place with access to a range of community facilities in the heart of the fastest growing area in Mackay.

The northern suburbs of the Mackay urban area, namely Rural View, Eimeo, Blacks Beach, Dolphin Heads, Bucasia and Shoal Point, are collectively referred to as the Northern Beaches.

The Northern Beaches experienced the highest population growth rate and number during the recent high growth period in the Mackay region, growing from 8,800 in 2001 to 18,700 in 2016, as the Mackay region benefitted from expansions in coal mining, mining service industries and tourism.

The Northern Beaches remains a major population growth area. The population catchment had a population of 20,000 in 2018 and is projected to attract 30% of future population growth in the Mackay region, growing to over 30,000 by 2041.

What is a Community Hub?

A community hub brings together community facilities and social infrastructure services in a centrally accessible location. By co-locating services, a hub provides a local meeting place where the community can connect. This is an opportunity to create new partnerships and through cooperation deliver a range of community activities, programs, services and events tailored to the needs of the Northern Beaches community.

The Northern Beaches Community Hub has the potential to:

  • provide a community space that appeals to a broad range of users
  • be an active space catering to the health and well-being of the community
  • be a connected space connecting community spatially and digitally
  • be a flexible space to future proof the community hub
  • be a tropical space that responds and celebrates the local climate.

Proposed outcomes:

The Northern Beaches Community Hub will provide a focal point for services and activities. The concept will include spaces which could:

• cluster community facilities to deliver more cost-effective service delivery
• contribute to place-making and community building in the Northern Beaches area
• provide meeting spaces for community groups, families, seniors and youth
• provide a range of community activities, programs, services and events
• provide opportunities for cross-referral and delivery of community services and programs
• encourage co-operation and partnerships across community groups, government and the private sector.

The estimated cost to establish Stage 1A of the community hub is $10 million. The Australian Government has committed $6.5 million towards this project. Council is currently seeking further funding to deliver further stages of the project.

Aerial view of site


Northern Beaches Community Hub Reference Group

A reference group is helping to inform council during the planning and design of a new Northern Beaches Community Hub.

View the master plan

Download the Northern Beaches Community Hub Master Plan.

Stay updated on this project by subscribing to its project update emails. Click the Stay Informed button on the right of this page. You will receive an email afterwards asking you to confirm your subscription.

PROJECT UPDATE:
In January 2024, the tender was awarded for stage 1A of Northern Beaches Community Hub. Click here to learn more.

Civil works began on the site in November, 2022.


The Northern Beaches Community Hub will be a welcoming local meeting place with access to a range of community facilities in the heart of the fastest growing area in Mackay.

The northern suburbs of the Mackay urban area, namely Rural View, Eimeo, Blacks Beach, Dolphin Heads, Bucasia and Shoal Point, are collectively referred to as the Northern Beaches.

The Northern Beaches experienced the highest population growth rate and number during the recent high growth period in the Mackay region, growing from 8,800 in 2001 to 18,700 in 2016, as the Mackay region benefitted from expansions in coal mining, mining service industries and tourism.

The Northern Beaches remains a major population growth area. The population catchment had a population of 20,000 in 2018 and is projected to attract 30% of future population growth in the Mackay region, growing to over 30,000 by 2041.

What is a Community Hub?

A community hub brings together community facilities and social infrastructure services in a centrally accessible location. By co-locating services, a hub provides a local meeting place where the community can connect. This is an opportunity to create new partnerships and through cooperation deliver a range of community activities, programs, services and events tailored to the needs of the Northern Beaches community.

The Northern Beaches Community Hub has the potential to:

  • provide a community space that appeals to a broad range of users
  • be an active space catering to the health and well-being of the community
  • be a connected space connecting community spatially and digitally
  • be a flexible space to future proof the community hub
  • be a tropical space that responds and celebrates the local climate.

Proposed outcomes:

The Northern Beaches Community Hub will provide a focal point for services and activities. The concept will include spaces which could:

• cluster community facilities to deliver more cost-effective service delivery
• contribute to place-making and community building in the Northern Beaches area
• provide meeting spaces for community groups, families, seniors and youth
• provide a range of community activities, programs, services and events
• provide opportunities for cross-referral and delivery of community services and programs
• encourage co-operation and partnerships across community groups, government and the private sector.

The estimated cost to establish Stage 1A of the community hub is $10 million. The Australian Government has committed $6.5 million towards this project. Council is currently seeking further funding to deliver further stages of the project.

Aerial view of site


Northern Beaches Community Hub Reference Group

A reference group is helping to inform council during the planning and design of a new Northern Beaches Community Hub.

View the master plan

Download the Northern Beaches Community Hub Master Plan.

Stay updated on this project by subscribing to its project update emails. Click the Stay Informed button on the right of this page. You will receive an email afterwards asking you to confirm your subscription.

  • Project update: January 26, 2024

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    Tender awarded for stage 1A of Northern Beaches Community Hub

    One of council’s signature projects, the Northern Beaches Community Hub, will begin taking shape onsite.

    Council has awarded a $10.2 million tender to Fergus Builders for stage 1A and associated works of the key piece of infrastructure to service the rapidly growing Northern Beaches.

    It includes an undercover multi-purpose court, adjoining kitchen and store, nature play and picnic spaces, as well as landscaping, pedestrian links, and a parking area.

    Mayor Greg Williamson said construction was expected to start in March and be completed late May 2025, weather permitting.

    “A subsequent stage 1B includes a library and community hub and council is actively seeking State and Federal government funding opportunities for those future works,’’ Mayor Williamson said.

    “A lot of work has gone into planning for this project, and it is exciting to see the vision coming to fruition,’’ he said.

    Mayor Williamson said as well as design work completed to date, council had also undertaken extensive civil works on the greenfield site.

    He said that included a new internal connector road between Rosewood Drive and Eimeo Road.

    That road opened recently and was named Badyari Yalu Road (pronounced bud-jar-e yar-loo) by traditional owners.

    It translates to “little child” in the Yuwi Aboriginal language and is to honour the many young lives lost at a Northern Beaches orphanage in the late 1800s.

    Mayor Williamson said the stage 1A contract, awarded for $10,225,223 included additional civil works, such as landscaping to Badyari Yalu Road and drainage works to the east of the site.

    Council has conducted extensive community consultation to inform the Northern Beaches Community Hub masterplan.

    This has included the establishment of a Northern Beaches Community Reference Group made up of key stakeholders.

    This project is funded by the Australian Government and Mackay Regional Council. The Australian Government has committed $6.5 million towards stage 1A, with council contributing the remainder of the cost of the works.

    Click here to find more information on the exciting Northern Beaches Community Hub project.

    Above: An artist’s impression of the undercover multi-purpose court to be built as part of stage 1A of the Northern Beaches Community Hub.

  • Project update: December 20, 2023

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    Traditional owners choose new road’s name in fitting tribute

    A new road has opened at the Northern Beaches Community Hub site and its name has been chosen by traditional owners to honour young lives lost during a sad era of our history.

    The new road, which provides access to the site from Rosewood Drive and Eimeo Road, has been called Badyari Yalu Road (pronounced bud-jar-e yar-loo).

    This translates to “little child” in the Yuwi Aboriginal language.

    Mayor Greg Williamson said up until now the road had been known simply as J4 as work on the Northern Beaches Community Hub site got under way.

    He said council decided it would be appropriate to consult with the traditional owners to come up with an appropriate and respectful name for the new road.

    “The Yuwibara people have a strong affinity with this area through their families’ ancestors and they were honoured to be involved in the road’s naming.”

    Yuwi Aboriginal language knowledge holder Deb Clark nee Hazeldean said the name was in recognition of the many young children who died during the years an orphanage was run at the Northern Beaches.

    She and Aunty Veronica Ahwang said to this day many of those children silently remained in unidentified resting places on Yuwi country.

    “On behalf of the Yuwi language knowledge holders, I would like to extend our sincere thanks and gratitude for reaching out and working collaboratively with us on the naming of the J4 road,’’ they said.

    “The implementation of the name ‘badyari yalu’ also means it will stand as a reminder of a part of Mackay's sad but true early history.

    “This project will provide acknowledgment, education and truth telling for all people to view and understand as we move into the future.”

    The road is now open to the public.

    Click here to find more information on the Northern Beaches Community Hub project.

  • Project update: August 11, 2023

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    Rosewood Drive road closure

    Council is currently undertaking civil works on the future Northern Beaches Community Hub. These works include footpaths, lighting, drainage and the construction of a road linking Eimeo Road to Rosewood Drive.

    Tomorrow (Saturday, August 12), council will be conducting associated electrical works on Rosewood Drive, weather permitting. This work is expected to take a few hours sometime between the hours of 6am and noon.

    A road closure will be in place on Rosewood Drive and during this time this section of the road will be unavailable to both motorists and pedestrians. Detours will be in place.

    There will be some noise and dust disturbances with various plant and equipment onsite. Council apologises for any inconvenience caused and appreciates your patience during these essential works.

    Click here to find more information on the exciting Northern Beaches Community Hub project.




  • Project update: March 31, 2023

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    Traffic disruptions: Civil works about to start on Rosewood Drive

    Council is delivering civil works in preparation for the future Northern Beaches Community Hub.

    From Monday (April 3), footpath and electrical works will commence on Rosewood Drive for about six weeks.

    During this time there will be traffic control in place with detours for pedestrian access. Please refer to map one.

    As indicated on map two, a three-day road closure is planned from April 6 to 8 to allow for electrical work to occur under the road pavement.

    This work has been planned to coincide with school holidays to minimise disruption to Mackay Northern Beaches State High School.

    Click here to find more information on the exciting Northern Beaches Community Hub project.

  • Project update: November 17, 2022

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    Work starts on highly anticipated Northern Beaches project

    Council is about to start work on its largest community infrastructure project in more than 20 years.

    On Monday, November 21, civil works are scheduled to begin on a parcel of land opposite Northern Beaches State High School to make way for the Northern Beaches Community Hub.

    The civil works will include the construction of J4 Road, off Rosewood Drive and Eimeo Road, and associated earthworks.

    While these works are under way, design consultants CA Architects will begin working on the detailed design for stage 1A and 1B of the project.

    Following the completion of the civil works, construction is planned to begin on stage 1A, which has received $6.5 million in funding from the Australian Government and a $4.2 million contribution from council.

    Council also plans to seek funding for stage 1B, which will include a library, meeting rooms and a cafe.

    Deputy Mayor Karen May, who chairs the Northern Beaches Community Hub Reference Group, said CA Architects had recently met with the group to discuss plans for the facility.

    “There was a lot of positive feedback regarding the project, and everyone is excited for the facility to start taking shape,” Cr May said.

    “Stage 1A will include a nature play area, a multipurpose court with line marking for various ball sports and a picnic area, among other things,” she said.

    “The Northern Beaches is our region’s fastest growing area, and this project will provide residents with access to a range of community facilities it desperately needs.

    “It will also serve as a welcoming meeting place for locals.

    “Parents who want easy access to swimming lessons for their children will also be pleased to know that we are looking forward to bringing a new aquatics centre to the Northern Beaches as part of future stages of this project.”

    If you would like to view the master plan for this project, find more information and subscribe to project update emails, visit connectingmackay.com.au/northern-beaches-community-hub.

    Northern Beaches Community Hub stages include:

    • Stage 1A – Includes a multipurpose undercover area, parking area, nature play area, picnic area, landscaping, pedestrian links and internal roads. Design and construction is funded by the Australian Government and Mackay Regional Council.
      A Changing Places (accessible adult change facility for people with a disability) will also be included as part of stage 1A and will be funded by Mackay Regional Council.
    • Stage 1B – Includes the library and various meeting, program and activity rooms, café, town square and landscaping, pedestrian links and internal roads. Design is funded by council; construction is not yet funded.
    • Stage 2 – Future works that will include an aquatics centre and a kick and throw space adjoining the centre.
    • Stage 3 – Future works that will include the development of the northern parcel of the site. At this stage, we envisage this area to be used for an office building with car parking.


    Below: Peter Muller of CA Architects and Deputy Mayor Karen May discuss ideas with Northern Beaches Community Hub Reference Group members Mia Sammut-Landt of Northern Queensland Primary Health Network (NQPHN) and Scott McPherson of Ideal Placements.

  • Project update #5: September 29, 2022

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    Northern Beaches hub takes a step forward

    Mackay Regional Council has today appointed a tender for design consultancy services to CA Architects for the first stages of the Northern Beaches Community Hub.

    The tender comes after the Master Plan for the 3.7-hectare site, located between Mackay/Eimeo Road and Rosewood Drive, opposite Northern Beaches State High School, was endorsed by council in December last year.

    The Northern Beaches Community Hub will be council’s largest infrastructure project in more than 20 years.

    Deputy Mayor Karen May, who chairs a Northern Beaches Community Reference Group, said the design phase will continue to be influenced by community feedback.

    “The reference group is made up of community members and agencies and was integral to the design of the Master Plan. We will reconvene in the coming months to continue to provide feedback throughout the design phase,” Cr May said.

    Cr May said stage 1A would include a multi-purpose undercover area, netball court line marking, nature play and associated infrastructure.

    “This stage will also include ‘Changing Places’ – an adult changing facility for the disabled community – parking area, nature play spaces, picnic area, landscaping, pedestrian links and internal roads.

    “Design and construction of stage 1A is estimated to cost around $10.75 million, with funding of $6.5 million secured from the Australian Government, and council contributing $4.25 million in funds,” she said.

    Stage 1B will consist of a library and various meeting, program and activity rooms, café, town square and landscaping, pedestrian links and internal roads.

    It is expected to cost between $20 - $30 million. Funding is yet to be finalised.

    Design of early civil works, including a road from Eimeo Road to Rosewood Drive, as well as drainage and earthworks for stage 1 projects is almost complete.

    Future works (stages 2 and 3) will include an aquatics centre and office building with car parking.

    The Northern Beaches Community Hub will be a welcoming local meeting place with access to a range of community facilities in the heart of the fastest growing area in Mackay.

    The Northern Beaches population catchment had a population of 20,000 in 2018 and is projected to attract 30% of future population growth in the Mackay region, growing to over 30,000 by 2041.

    Residents who would like to view the master plan for this project can visit www.connectingmackay.com.au to find more information and subscribe to project update emails.

    This project is funded by the Australian Government and Mackay Regional Council.

  • Project update #4: December 8, 2021

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    Northern Beaches Community Hub master plan endorsed

    The vision for a modern community hub to service the rapidly growing Northern Beaches is becoming clearer with a master plan endorsed by council today.

    The Northern Beaches Community Hub will be council’s largest community infrastructure project in more than 20 years.

    Today’s endorsement by an ordinary meeting clears the way for detailed design to start on the first stages of the Northern Beaches Community Hub.

    The project will be built on a parcel of land council purchased last year opposite Northern Beaches State High School.

    Deputy Mayor Karen May, who chairs a Northern Beaches Community Reference Group set up for this project, said stage 1A would include a multi-purpose undercover area, nature play and associated infrastructure.

    She said this stage was estimated to cost around $10.75 million, requiring $4.25 million in council funds.

    “We’ve previously received funding of $6.5 million through the Federal Government for this project.”

    That Federal Government funding is through the Department of Infrastructure, Regional Development and Cities’ Development Grants Program.

    Future stages include a library, with an aquatic facility also planned in later stages.

    Cr May said the high-level cost estimate for stages one and two of the master plan was
    $52 million, but this could be broken down to different sub-stages, depending on funding.

    “The detailed design work will provide a shovel-ready project to enable us to seek more funding from the State and Federal governments,’’ she said.

    Cr May said there had been extensive community consultation on the Northern Beaches Community Hub project, including a concept master plan developed in 2020.

    “We also set up the Northern Beaches Community Hub Community Reference Group and an agencies group to help guide the master plan process,’’ she said.

    “Stakeholders on those groups helped provide us with excellent feedback and ideas to ensure such a facility will best meet the needs of the Northern Beaches,’’ she said.

    Click here to view the master plan.

    Printed copies of the plan are available at Dudley Denny City Library and Gordon White Library.

    Above: Preliminary concept of north-west perspective.

    Above: Preliminary concept of south-west perspective.

    Note: These are concepts only and are subject to funding.

    Click here to read more about this project.


  • Project update #3: April 14, 2021

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    New Northern Beaches Community Hub Reference Group under way

    A key to the success of a planned Northern Beaches Community Hub will be the ownership residents feel about the exciting facility.

    With that in mind, council has formed a Northern Beaches Community Hub Reference Group, which has now met twice.

    Minutes from the reference group meetings were adopted at today’s ordinary meeting of council (Wednesday, April 14).

    Chair, Deputy Mayor Karen May, said this was an extremely important project for Mackay, particularly the fast-growing Northern Beaches area.

    “About 20,000 people live in the Northern Beaches area and council, in its last term, secured a 3.7-hectare site for the establishment of community infrastructure that is well overdue,’’ she said.

    Cr May said there had been a fantastic response from community members and agencies to be involved in the reference groups.

    “It is so important for council, in this preliminary design stage of the project, to ensure we harness what the community really wants out of the Northern Beaches Community Hub,’’ she said.

    “We can then make sure we facilitate what the community needs. It is a very exciting time for council and the community.”

    Other councillor representatives on the Community Reference Group include Cr Michelle Green, who is deputy chair, and Cr Belinda Hassan.

    Other council representatives include Development Services director Aletta Nugent and Community and Client Services director Angela Hays, as well as officers.

    Community representatives include Sian Burrows, Tegan Jones, Rae Lee Cox, Maighan Grant, Maria (Ela) Maglente, Geoff Berger, Valeriya Edsall, David Southwood and Laurence Mayer.

    The reference group doesn’t have any decision-making powers. Minutes and any recommendations of the group are considered at council meetings.

  • Project update #2: May 1, 2020

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    $6.5 million in Federal Government funding and land acquired

    Mayor Greg Williamson said a site for the Northern Beaches Community Hub had been selected, with land purchases finalised in April 2020.

    “We’ve purchased 3.7 hectares in the Rural View area, located between Mackay/Eimeo Road and Rosewood Drive,” Cr Williamson said.

    “The land was purchased by council for $3.6M after a review of many options in the Northern Beaches area,” he said.

    “Now that the land is finalised, we will continue the master planning of the site and then move into the concept design phase within the next six months.

    “From concept design to finalisation of Stage One is likely to be between 24 and 30 months, and at this stage COVID-19 is not expected to have an impact on that time frame.”

    Cr Williamson said while council was still working on the final scope of Stage One, the hub would likely contain community meeting spaces, library facilities and other services.

    “Stage Two is likely to include some aquatic facilities and other services,” he said.

    Stage One total costs estimates are yet to be finalised, but the Mayor said council was expecting it to be around $20M.

    “We received $6.5M in funding from the Federal Government as an election commitment and will also be seeking State funding, with the balance to be covered by council.”

  • Project update #1: January 2, 2020

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    Preferred site identified

    Mackay Regional Council CEO Craig Doyle said council had identified a preferred site for the planned Northern Beaches Hub.

    He said council was now working to secure the site with an aim of finalising land acquisition and master planning for the project by mid-2020.

    “Council has allocated budget in this financial year to progress concept design and identify and finalise land options,” Mr Doyle said.

    “The final costs are still being finalised and will depend on land options, cost of construction and scope, but at this stage we have $6.5M of Federal funding approved for the project,” he said.

    “Other sources of funding could include State funding and council.

    “We are very close to finalising the land acquisition and this will allow master planning of that particular site, which would then lead to concept and detailed design phases in the second half of 2020.”

    Mr Doyle said, at this stage, any forecasting of final project costs involved high level estimates.

    “We’re still finalising the scope of stage one of this project,” he said.

    “We have undertaken a number of business case and external reviews of the types of facilities and activities that could be provided based on current and future population and demographics in the Northern Beaches.”

Page published: 26 Jan 2024, 01:26 PM