Council and community commended for Palmwoods placemaking project
  • Tuesday 27 March 2018

The new town square at Palmwoods, officially opened earlier this month, has already won a prestigious national level award.

The project was honoured with the Small Scale Place Project Commendation at the 2018 Place Leaders Awards in recognition of the community-led activation approach adopted by Sunshine Coast Council and CoDesign Studio to shape the new heart of the hinterland town.

Place Development and Design Portfolio Councillor Peter Cox said the award win was well deserved credit for a brilliant project.

“Many congratulations go to all those involved in creating the new $3 million Piccabeen Green town square which was named by the community and has been warmly embraced by locals and visitors,” Cr Cox said.

“In tandem with building Piccabeen Green, we engaged CoDesign Studio consultants to run a small scale, sustainable, community-led activation program to enhance the vibrancy and identity of Palmwoods.

“This activated the town to help support businesses during construction and will help the community continue with activation events in the town now that Piccabeen Green is complete.”

Division 5 Councillor Jenny McKay said putting the people of Palmwoods at the heart of shaping their own new town square was the perfect way to provide a space that met their needs now and into the future.

“The benefits for the Palmwoods community are both new physical infrastructure and the development of social capital over the long-term. It exemplifies good practice in placemaking,” Cr McKay said.

“With the community strongly engaged over many years of workshops and consultation, they naturally have a strong ownership of this new space so it is hardly surprising there has been nothing but positive feedback since it opened.”

Council has previously received multiple awards for its placemaking approach and the way in which it engages with the community to deliver quality plans and infrastructure for the region.

These include a Towards Best Practice Award from the Place Leaders Association (PLA) and an Award of Excellence for Planning in Landscape Architecture from the Australian Institute of Landscape Architect (AILA), for its PLACE+ Beerwah initiative.

About the town square

  • From a sloped car park to a vibrant green community space with a boardwalk and 77 new plants – a piece of Palmwoods has been completely transformed by one of council’s most significant infrastructure upgrades from the past year.
  • The project includes seating, shade and outdoor dining opportunities, and has improved pedestrian links through the town, connecting the three shopping precincts on Margaret, Main and Little Main streets.
  • Other features include water bubblers with in-built dog bowls and bespoke art features including seating, historical information, and directional signage.
  • Smart city technologies were also installed, including Wi-Fi and smart lighting.