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From crops to community: evolution of the thriving Sunshine Cove development

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Long before its evolution as a sought-after residential community, this Sunshine Coast site had a 100-year history as farmland.

Watermelon and rockmelon crops and fruit orchids grew on the site until 2006, and nearly 100 head of cattle were agisted until 2007 on what is today known as Sunshine Cove.

The 106-hectare site was used by the Wise family as farmland before it was sold and plans were unveiled in 2004 to transform the land into a thriving community in the heart of Maroochydore.

Sunshine Cove was originally part of a dairy farm stretching to the plateau of Buderim, purchased by Frederick Henry Wise Jnr in 1901 for 800 pounds.

Today, Frederick’s great-grandson Peter Wise continues to run the remaining 35 hectares of the original farm, adjacent to the Sunshine Motorway, where figs and coffee beans are grown.

The tree line on Wises Farm in 1996 and now with the development of Sunshine Cove.

Chardan Development Group’s vision for the land was to create 11 precincts, each individually designed with a mix of commercial, retail, showroom and office spaces fully integrated with community amenities, public facilities and private residences.

The first stages of construction began at Sunshine Cove in 2006.

The final land release is currently underway, with 38 allotments in stage three of the Lancelin Precinct for sale, including freehold urban and terrace lots, plus waterfront blocks with sweeping lake vistas.

Sunshine Cove Realty’s Penny Service said that at the heart of Sunshine Cove was its lakes and parklands, plus three hectares of cultural heritage and habitat conservation areas that pay homage to the history of the site.

Sunshine Cove in September 2007.

“The first stage of civil construction saw over 35 hectares of lakes and parklands emerge, creating a stunning setting for this unique and vibrant mixed-density development,” she said.

“The site also includes large and established tracts of vegetation, once cleared to allow for farming, that now form the cultural heritage and habitat conservation areas.

“Providing a stunning backdrop to the Sunshine Cove community and encompassing over three hectares, the cultural heritage conservation area is historically significant and will be enjoyed by the community for generations to come.”

“Delivering the infrastructure during the first phase of civil construction was always the developers intent; they wanted the community to see their vision for Sunshine Cove from day one.”

Sunshine Cove’s 25-hectare lake system has also become vital in protecting the quality of waterways around the Maroochydore area.

Sunshine Cove in January 2010.

“The impressive lake system also undertakes an important amenity in the conveyance of stormwater from over 640 adjoining hectares, including the areas of Buderim and Maroochydore.

“Facilitating as the local catchment area, the lake system will also act as a water quality treatment system, assisting in the protection of water quality within Cornmeal Creek and the Maroochy River.”

Ms Service said the developer of Sunshine Cove had worked with Sunshine Coast Council and and the Sunshine Cove Residents Association to install two kayak launching areas on either side of the weir to allow access to the Maroochy River mouth.

“The residents love it,” she said.

Sunshine Cove also will have more than 8km of interlinked boardwalk, pedestrian and bicycle pathways once complete.

For more information on Lancelin Stage 3, visit the sales office at 17 Hidden Place, Maroochydore, or contact Penny Service from Sunshine Cove Realty on 5443 2458 or penny@sunhinecoverealty.com.

An aerial of Sunshine Cove from 2001.

Sunshine Cove’s development timeline

2004: Preliminary approval is granted.

2006: Construction and earthworks commences on delivering the 35 hectares of lakes and parklands, the large land parcels as well as more than 8km of pedestrian pathways and bikeways, connecting Sunshine Cove to Sunshine Plaza and Maroochydore’s city centre.

2008: Opening of Maroochy Boulevard in August 2008

2009: The completion of the first stage of the ‘loop collector’ road, known as Sunrise Drive, is complete. Construction on the second stage of the loop collector road, Sunshine Cove Way, also commences. The last remaining 90,000 cubic metres of land is compacted.

2010: The first stage is released to the market. The Moreton Precinct features 72 freehold residential sites and three larger medium density sites, plus two community parks.

2011: The Sarina Precinct is released, offering the first waterfront land for the development. It features 23 terrace allotments and 28 waterfront allotments.

2013: The Savannah Precinct is released and features 82 freehold allotments including the popular rear-loaded terrace and laneway allotments. This precinct also sees the inclusion of 12 direct waterfront homesites.

2014: The Trinity Precinct is released, adjacent to the one-hectare community parkland. Trinity features 72 freehold allotments plus 29 blocks overlooking the lake. The mixed-use Flinders Precinct is also released, which today is home to retail and commercial opportunities, plus residential sites.

2015: The Mackenzie Precinct is released in two stages. This is the first land release across the lake within Sunshine Cove. It offers a diverse range of blocks and will see more than 140 new homes built.

2016: Sunshine Cove is awarded the 2016 Award for Excellence, Residential Community, by the Urban Development Institute of Australia. This same year the Claremont Precinct is released, offering more than 150 new homes, plus the Hervey Precinct, which includes 70 small lots.

2017: The release of the Bedarra Precinct sees a diverse range of 138 homesites.

2019: The Somerton Precinct is released and approval is given on the balance land.

2020: Stage one of the Lancelin precinct is released. It features 29 waterview blocks, only accessible by the Cheyenne Way bridge.

2022: The final stage of freehold residential land at Sunshine Cove, the Lancelin Precinct is released to the database, before releasing publicly in 2023. It features a selection of urban, terrace and waterfront blocks.

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