Kool Beanz Academy, Carrara is an early childhood centre born out of a partnership between the client, Coulsen Operations, and the Gold Coast Suns AFL Club.

The site sits prominently in front of Heritage Bank Stadium which is situated on a bend in the bank of the Nerang River.

Given its location, the site is susceptible to flooding and required an innovative and collaborative approach to all aspects of its design. An array of stakeholders and experts has brought this project to fruition. It included civil engineers, flood engineers, architects, arborists, the Suns Club, the City of Gold Coast Council, play certifiers, and early learning experts (including Autism Queensland).

Ideals of inclusivity, health and well-being, a love of learning, connection to the natural world and fun are at the heart of this design.

The result is an amazing facility that cultivates engaging and resilient play experiences for children of all abilities, fostering a love of learning, a connection to nature and promoting their health and well-being.

Tim Murray

Jury Citation (from 2024 AILA QLD Landscape Architecture Award for Play Spaces):

“Kool Beanz Academy exemplifies collaborative thinking with specific community values to accomplish the widest range of high-impact elements possible within a single design.

Educational, fun and physically challenging playscapes are complimented with a strong planting palette for all visitors to enjoy.

Overall, Kool Beanz supports high achievement across the criteria for Landscape Architecture.”