8 Mar 2016

Kathy Kruger
More Gold Coast

Below is an excerpt only, to view the original full story please click here.

Thirty five years ago, Robina was largely a swampy expanse of grazing land, pretty much in the middle of nowhere. Now the City’s first  master-planned community and adjacent Varsity Lakes are key to the Gold Coast’s future, with a vision for triple-digit growth.

The self-confessed ‘big fan’ of the Gold Coast, and Australia’s most famous demographer Bernard Salt, believes the Robina area will be key to a bright and populous future for the Gold Coast, which could see the city’s population double in the next 35 years.

And it’s in accommodating the increased population, and particularly in providing smart jobs, that the Robina area is set to intensify its importance, alongside the Gold Coast CBD, Southport and the Gold Coast Health & Knowledge Precinct.

If the Robina Business Alliance (RBA) realises its vision, Robina will be one of the city’s key engine rooms surrounded by green – with a City Park, modeled on the great parks of the world including New York’s Central Park, to provide the lungs for a fast-growing city.

They commissioned independent researchers Urbis to crunch the numbers on the opportunities available in the region and they add up to a vision of staggering growth.

  • Robina area population predicted to grow by 126 per cent to more than 92,000 people by 2050
  • Growth of 29,085 new jobs in the area to 41,730 in 2050, thereby doubling its share of the Gold Coast’s total employment
  • Growing the size of the Robina/Varsity Lakes economy 2.8 times from $1.9 billion in 2016 to $5.4 billion in 2050.
  • Bond University forecast to grow by 125 per cent by 2050

The RBA vision hinges on major investment and planning support to develop not only increased residential density, but commercial development as a major location for smart business, innovation, technology, health and education. Also critical will be transport infrastructure and the RBA will lobby for a light rail connection to the coastal strip and linkages to the Gold Coast airport.

Urbis research shows Robina/ Varsity currently has Gold Coast City’s highest volume of occupied office space and levels of worker productivity and is home to a diverse and highly connected network of industry leading businesses.

RBA President Ben Burgess says the knowledge-based employment vision can be built on a strong existing framework.

“Urbis research shows Robina/ Varsity currently has Gold Coast City’s highest volume of occupied office space and levels of worker productivity and is home to a diverse and highly connected network of industry leading businesses,” says Mr Burgess.

Robina is the mid-point of a research triangle that includes the Gold Coast Health and Knowledge Precinct centred around Griffith University and the Gold Coast University Hospital to the north, with the southern point being the emerging precinct of Southern Cross University and the airport.

Urbis Director Malcolm Aikman says Robina/Varsity’s professional services sector was expected to increase by 471 per cent to 2050, with health services to grow by 195 per cent over the same period.

“Our research shows that Robina/Varsity’s future job market will be led by professional, scientific and technical services, which will offer more than 6,300 FTE jobs in 2050, representing 15 per cent of this region’s employment,” he says.