Events Centre to host Smart Communities Summit
  • Tuesday 01 March 2016
ImageSome of the sharpest civic leaders and technology experts from Australia and overseas will converge on the Sunshine Coast from Wednesday, March 2 for the inaugural 2016 Smart Communities Summit.

Sunshine Coast Council CEO Michael Whittaker said the three-day summit at The Events Centre at Caloundra would provide the first opportunity within Australia for national and international leaders to reveal the amazing technologies that will be part and parcel of our cities and communities in the near future.

“The theme of this summit is ‘Unlocking the Smart City Code’ and discovering some of the incredible new technologies that are being developed to make our cities more liveable, workable and sustainable in the future,” Mr Whittaker said.
“We’re going to find out exactly how new technologies can and are being integrated into cities and communities to support growth, encourage new investment, improve everyday access to information and services.
“The summit will include keynote speakers from Germany, the United States and across Australia who work for leading technology, telecommunications and infrastructure providers as well as universities and local government imparting their knowledge.”
Mr Whittaker said the Sunshine Coast was an ideal location to host the inaugural summit.

"Council collaborated with leading business and industry organisations, the University of the Sunshine Coast and the Queensland Government to develop the Regional Economic Development Strategy (REDS) that was released in 2013 and provides a 20-year blueprint for the region's economy and generating prosperity for the community," he said.

"The Sunshine Coast is now out-performing most regions nationally and rolling out some  nation-leading game-changer projects like SunCentral - Australia's only green field CBD at Maroochydore. We have also applied for a cable protection zone so we can encourage the private sector to deliver an international broadband submarine cable connection to the Sunshine Coast. 

"Our region is one of four in Australia named in the world’s Smart21 Communities for embracing broadband technology to deliver economic opportunities that lead to new jobs, investment and social development.

“Earlier this month we officially started construction on SunCentral Maroochydore, which is forecast to create more than 30,000 permanent jobs in our region by 2040 and provide a $5.9 billion boost to the Queensland economy over the project’s 20-year life.
“A key part of this project will involve applying our own Smart City Framework which includes digital solutions for the management of street lighting, car parking, water, power and signage that is detected by smartphones and other technologies and where rubbish bins are emptied via automated underground tubes. 
“In addition, the Living Lab centered in Caloundra is well underway and this is where we will test the technology solutions and their compatibility before we deploy across the wider region."
Visit Sunshine Coast (VSC) CEO Simon Ambrose said hosting the inaugural Smart Communities Summit would showcase the many layers of our region's appeal. 

"Business Events Sunshine Coast (BESC) is a division of VSC and the convention bureau for the Sunshine Coast. As a sponsor of this important conference, our BESC team is focused on attracting lucrative national and international conference delegates to the Sunshine Coast. This is not only great for business and tourism but has flow on effects and shows the breadth and depth of what we have to offer here.

"An estimated $60 million dollars is generated from the 50,000-plus delegates travelling to the Sunshine Coast annually. These important business visitors spend up to five times that of a leisure traveller.

“We can see the results of our bids starting to pay off as we attract significant business events to the region and look forward to even greater success from this market in the future.”

For more information about the 2016 Smart Communities Summit, including program outline, visit