Coast is a city and local government area in the
southeast corner of Queensland,
Australia. It is the second most populous city
in the state and the sixth most populous city
in the country. Gold Coast City is renowned for
its sunny subtropical climate, popular surfing
beaches, expansive waterway and canal systems,
a skyline dominated by high-rise apartment buildings,
active nightlife and wide variety of tourist attractions.
James Cook became the first European to note
the region when he sailed along the coast on May
16, 1770 in the HM Bark Endeavour. This exploration
was however focused on areas south of Gold Coast
region in the northern rivers of New South Wales.
Matthew Flinders, an explorer charting the continent
north from the colony of New South Wales, sailed
past in 1802. The region remained uninhabited
by Europeans until 1823 when explorer John Oxley
landed at Mermaid Beach, which was named after
his boat, a cutter named Mermaid.
hinterland's red cedar supply attracted large
numbers of people to the area in the mid 1800s.
The western suburb of Nerang was surveyed and
established as a base for the industry. Later
in 1875, Southport was surveyed and established
and quickly grew a reputation as a secluded holiday
destination for the upper class Brisbane residents.
1925, tourism to the area grew rapidly when Jim
Cavill established the Surfers Paradise Hotel,
which transformed to Circle on Cavill neighbouring
with Towers of Chevron Renaissance shopping mall
and resort apartment complex. The population grew
steadily to support the tourism industry and by
the 1940s, real estate speculators and journalists
were referring to the area as the "Gold Coast."
The true origin of the name is still debatable.
The name "Gold Coast" was officially
proclaimed in 1958 when the South Coast Town Council
was renamed "Gold Coast Town Council."
the 1970s, real-estate developers gained a dominant
role in local politics, and high-rises began to
dominate the area now known as Surfers
Paradise and later in 1981 the airport was
established. In 1994 the Gold Coast City Council
and the Shire of Albert amalgamated to create
new city boundaries under the administration of
the City of Gold Coast Council.
The Gold Coast can be reached from Brisbane
by Pacific Motorway M1 (blue) and Pacific Highway
(Highway 1) from Sydney
Coast City stretches from Beenleigh on the southern
fringe of Logan City, for approximately 60km (38
miles) south to Coolangatta
situated on the New South Wales border, and extends
west to the foothills of the Great Dividing Range
in World Heritage listed Lamington National Park.
Tweed Heads and sections of Beaudesert are also
commonly referred to as being a part of 'The Gold
Coast' region. However, they do not fall into
the statistical boundaries of Gold Coast City.
Gold Coast is situated in the southeast corner
of Queensland, to the south of Brisbane, the state
capital. Due to continuous development in south-east
Queensland over the past 30 years, the Gold Coast/Beenleigh/Logan
City/Brisbane region is now a conurbation. The
Gold Coast officially stretches from the south
end of Logan City and Russell Island to the border
with New South Wales. The southernmost town is
Coolangatta which includes Point Danger and its
lighthouse. Coolangatta is a twin city with Tweed
Heads located directly across the border. At 28.1667°
S 153.55° E, this is the most easterly point
on the Queensland mainland (Point Lookout on the
offshore island of North Stradbroke is slightly
approximately forty kilometres of holiday resorts
and surfing beaches stretch north to the suburb
of Main Beach, and then further on Stradbroke
Island. The suburbs of Southport and Surfers Paradise
form the Gold Coast's commercial centre (latitude
about 27.7 degrees south). The administrative
area of the Gold Coast City Council continues
north up to and including Beenleigh.
major river in the area is the Nerang River. Much
of the land between the coastal strip and the
hinterland was once wetlands drained by this river,
but the swamps have been converted into man-made
waterways (over 260 km , or over 9 times that
of Venice, Italy) and artificial islands covered
in upmarket homes. The heavily developed coastal
strip sits on a narrow barrier sandbar between
these waterways and the sea.
the west, the city is bordered by a part of the
Great Dividing Range commonly referred to as the
'Gold Coast hinterland'. A 206 km² section
of the mountain range is protected by Lamington
National Park and has been listed as a World Heritage
area in recognition of its "outstanding geological
features displayed around shield volcanic craters
and the high number of rare and threatened rainforest
species." The area is popular among bushwalkers
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canal living is a feature of the Gold Coast, and
most canal frontage homes have pontoons. The Gold
Coast Seaway, between The Spit and South Stradbroke
Island, allows vessels direct access to the Pacific
Ocean from The Broadwater and many of the city's
canal estates. Breakwaters on either side of the
Seaway prevent longshore drift and the bar from
silting up. A sand pumping operation on the Spit
pipes sand under the Seaway to continue this natural
process. Residential canals were first built on
the Gold Coast in 1950s and construction continues
to the present day. Early canals included Florida
Gardens, Isle of Capri which were under construction
at the time of the 1954 flood. Recently constructed
canals include Harbour Quays and Riverlinks completed
in 2007. There is over 890km of constructed residential
waterfront land within the city that is home to
over 80,000 residents.
The city consists of 57 kilometres of coastline
with some of the most popular surf breaks in Australia
including, South Stradbroke Island, The Spit,
Main Beach, Surfers Paradise, Broadbeach, Mermaid
Beach, Nobby Beach, Miami, Burleigh Beach, Burleigh
Heads, Tallebudgera Beach, Palm Beach, Curruminbin
Beach, Tugun, Bilinga, Kirra, Coolangatta, Greenmount,
Rainbow Bay, Snapper Rocks and Froggies Beach.
Duranbah beach is one of the world's best known
surfing beaches and is often thought of as being
part of Gold Coast City, but is actually just
across the New South Wales state border in Tweed
are also beaches along many of the Gold Coast's
860km of navigable tidal waterways. Popular inland
beaches include Southport, Budds Beach, Marine
Stadium, Currumbin Alley, Tallebudgera Estuary,
Jacobs Well, Jabiru Island, Paradise Point, Harley
Park Labrador, Santa Barbara, Boykambil and Evandale
Beach Safety and Management
the beaches are beautiful and enticing, there
are also inherent dangers, and the Gold Coast
has Australia’s largest professional surf
lifesaving service to protect people on the
beaches and to promote surf safety throughout
Queensland Department of Primary Industries carries
out the Queensland Shark Control Program (SCP)
to protect swimmers from sharks. No fatal shark
attacks have occurred on protected ocean beaches,
tidal waterways or canals on the Gold Coast since
1958 (however two fatal attacks have been recorded
in inland lake areas that are separate from the
tidal waterways network since 2000). Sharks are
caught by using nets and baited drumlines off
the major swimming beaches. Even with the SCP,
sharks do range within sight of the patrolled
beaches, lifeguards will clear swimmers from the
water if it is considered that there is a safety
Coast Beaches have experienced periods of severe
beach erosion. In 1967 a series of 11 cyclones
removed most of the sand from Gold Coast beaches.
The Government of Queensland engaged engineers
from Delft University in the Netherlands to advise
what to do about the beach erosion. The Delft
Report was published in 1971 and outlined a series
of works for Gold Coast Beaches including Gold
Coast Seaway, works at Narrowneck that resulted
in the Northern Gold Coast Beach Protection Strategy
and works at the Tweed River that became the Tweed
River Entrance Sand Bypassing Project. By 2005
most of the recommendations of the 1971 Delft
Report had been implemented. The Gold Coast City
Council commenced implementation of the Palm Beach,
Protection Strategy but ran into considerable
opposition from the community participating in
a NO REEF protest campaign. The Gold Coast City
Council then committed to completing a review
of beach management practices to update the Delft
Report. The Gold Coast Shoreline Management Plan
will be delivered by a range of organisations
including the EPA, Gold Coast City Council and
the Griffith Centre for Coastal Management.
Coast City Council is also investing into the
quality and capacity of the Gold Coast Oceanway
that provides sustainable transport along Gold
The border between Queensland and New South Wales
can be seen where the pine trees line the centre
of the street.
The border between Queensland and New South Wales
can be seen where the pine trees line the centre
of the street.
Gold Coast City Council and Government of Queensland
city is governed at the local level by the Gold
Coast City Council. On 23 October 1958, local
administrators established the Gold Coast Town
Council. Only six months later, on 16 May 1959,
the Queensland Government proclaimed the Gold
Coast a city. In 1995, Albert Shire Council merged
with the existing Gold Coast City Council to form
a supra-local authority that maintained the existing
name Gold Coast City Council.
Crime and Misconduct Commission has held an inquiry
into allegations of official misconduct against
candidates who ran in the 2004 Council elections.
The CMC found “secrecy, deceit and misinformation”
had corrupted the electoral process during the
2004 Gold Coast City Council election.
divisions represent Gold Coast, numbered from
division 01 (based at Beenleigh) to division 14
(based at Coolangatta). Former Olympian Ron Clarke
was elected mayor of the city in 2004. Former
mayors of the city include Gary Baildon, Lex Bell,
Ray Stevens, Ern Harley and Sir Bruce Small.
July 2007 the Queensland state government announced
local government reforms for Queensland that included
removing division 01 (Beenleigh) from Gold Coast
City and adding it to Logan City. The new city
boundaries will come into effect in association
with the local government elections of March 2008
city is represented at the state level by nine
members in the Queensland Legislative Assembly.
The seats they hold are: Broadwater, Burleigh,
Currumbin, Gaven, Mudgeeraba, Robina, Southport
and Surfers Paradise.
Gold Coast is represented by four members in the
House of Representatives, whose seats are Fadden
(northern), Moncrieff (central), McPherson (southern)
and Forde (western). Historically, the Gold Coast
has remained a very safe conservative electorate.
Three of the Gold Coast electorates (Fadden, Moncrieff
and McPherson) have returned only Liberal Party
representative since 1986.
Courthouse is the city's major courthouse and
has jurisdiction to hear petty criminal offences
and civil matters up to AU$250,000. Indictable
offences, criminal sentencing and civil matters
above AU$250,000 are heard in the higher Supreme
Court of Queensland which is located in Brisbane.
There are subsidiary Magistrates Courts, also
located at the northern and southern suburbs of
Beenleigh and Coolangatta.
Correctional Centre, located in the city's hinterland
suburb of Numinbah Valley, is an open-custody
prison farm. The centre is a minimum security
prison accommodating for up to 104 male prisoners
and in a separate annex, twenty-five female prisoners.
The Dreamworld Tower, tourism is vital in the
Gold Coast economy, the area boasting no less
than 5 major theme parks.
to a study completed by the Centre for Economic
Policy Modelling (CEPM) at the University of Queensland,
Gold Coast regional gross domestic product for
financial year ending June 30, 2002 was nearly
industry sectors contributing to the regional
gross domestic product included property services,
construction, retail trade, business services,
transport, tourism (accommodation, cafes and restaurants),
finance & insurance, health services, education,
wholesale trade and entertainment.
Gold Coast hosts over 830,000 international tourists
a year and approximately 3.6 million domestic
overnight visitors. Almost half of the international
tourists to the Gold Coast are from Japan and
New Zealand but the region is also getting increased
visitation from places such as India, the Middle
East and China.
Coast City is the major film production centre
in Queensland and has accounted for 75% of all
film production in Queensland since the 1990s,
with an expenditure of around $150 million per
year. Gold Coast is the third largest film production
centre in Australia behind Sydney and Melbourne.
Warner Brothers have large studios located just
outside of the city, at Oxenford which have been
the filming locations for films such as the Scooby
Doo films and The House of Wax (2005).
Roadshow Studios are situated adjacent to the
Warner Bros Movie World Theme Park at Oxenford.
The Studios consists of eight sound stages, production
offices, editing rooms, wardrobe, construction
workshops, water tanks and commissary. These sounds
stages vary in size and have an overall floor
area of 10,844 sq metres, making Warner Roadshow
Studio one of the largest studio lots in the Southern
Hemisphere. Recent productions include Scooby
Doo and The House of Wax. The Queensland Government
actively supports the film and television production
industry in Queensland and provides both non-financial
and financial assistance through the Pacific Film
and Television Commission.
Sport and Recreation
Sports on the Gold Coast, Queensland
Gold Coast is represented in 3 national competitions
by the following teams:
Team name Competition Sport
Gold Coast Titans National Rugby League Rugby
Gold Coast Blaze National Basketball League Basketball
East Coast Aces Australian Rugby Championship
Queensland Roar A-League Football (soccer)
three teams all have their first season in 2007
and are the first national teams in many years
to be situated on the Gold Coast.
league is the biggest spectator sport on the
Gold Coast and the Gold Coast Titans are the most
popular sporting team based on the Gold Coast.
Gold Coast does not host a team in the AFL but
from 2007 three AFL premiership matches involving
the North Melbourne Kangaroos will be played at
Gold Coast has also been mentioned as a prime
candidate for hosting an A-League team when the
competition is expanded. Former WWE Superstar
Nathan Jones comes from
the Gold Coast, as does swimmer Grant Hackett.
are many recreational activities situated on the
Gold Coast ranging from (famously) surfing to
fishing and boating to golf. The Gold Coast boasts
numerous golf links, including Hope Island, Sanctuary
Cove and The Glades.
is a range of sporting facilities on the Gold
Coast from the Carrara Stadium, Carrara Indoor
Sport Centre, Nerang Velodrome and the Sports
Super Centre. Some of these Facilities are being
superseded by newer and larger capacity facilities.
Two examples of these are the Gold Coast Convention
and Exhibition Centre to play host to a Gold Coast
Basketball team and Skilled Park to host NRL games.
Lexmark Indy 300 is a car racing event held annually,
usually in October. The course ventures through
the streets of Surfers Paradise and Main Beach.
The Indy 300 comprises many other events such
as the Indy Undie Ball and the Miss
Indy Competition. The V8 Supercars event also
coincides with the Indy 300, using the same track
carnival is the brainchild of entrepreneurs Gerry
Harvey (of Harvey Normans) and John
Singleton. In 2005 John Singleton won the
3 year Old Trophy with Tippitaka and proceeded
in true Singo-Style to shout the entire bar at
the Gold Coast Turf Club. He then backed up in
2006 to win the 2yr Old Classic with Mirror Mirror.
There is plans to relocate and build a state of
the art new racetrack at Palm Meadows which will
incoporate the Magic Million sale with facilities
for up to 4000 horses. The current race track
is too small and can not handle the amount of
horses for sale at the carnival.
hosts the Wintersun Festival, a two-week 1950s
and 1960s nostalgia festival with free entertainment
and attractions, including hot rods, restored
cars and revival bands playing music of the era.
July, more than 16,000 congregate on the Gold
Coast from around the world to participate in
the Gold Coast Marathon. There are six events,
including the 42.2km Marathon, 21.1km Half Marathon,
10km Run, 7.5km Walk and Junior Dash races for
the kids over 2.25km and 4km. Regarded as the
premier marathon in Australia, the Gold Coast
Airport Marathon is also recognised worldwide
for its fast, flat and scenic course and technical
excellence. It is also the largest annual community
sporting event held on the Gold Coast.
daily, local newspaper is The Gold Coast Bulletin
which is published by News
Corporation. The Gold Coast Sun and Gold Coast
Mail are other local newspapers.
Coast is unique in that it is officially in the
television broadcast licence areas of both Brisbane
(metro) and Northern New South Wales (regional).
The Brisbane networks are Seven, Nine and Ten.
The regional affiliates are Prime Television,
NBN Television and Southern
Cross Ten. Also broadcasting to the area are
the ABC and SBS television services. Subscription
television services Foxtel
(via cable) and Austar (via satellite) are also
FM radio stations include, 88 BeachFM (tourist
info., Top 40), 89.3 4CRB-FM (Christian), 90.9
SEAFM (Top 40, pop), 91.7 Coast FM (contemporary,
ABC local news and information), 92.5 Gold 92.5
(mix of 70s, 80s, 90s, and Top 40), 93.5 SBS (Brisbane),
94.1 Jazz Radio (jazz, blues and swing music),
97.7 JJJ Triple J (alternative and chart music),
102.9 Hot Tomato (Top 40, pop), 104 4MBS Classic,
105.7 Radio Metro (dance, pop, R&B, and left
field), 106 ABC Classic FM, and 107.3 LifeFM (Christian).
Several Brisbane AM and FM radio stations can
also be received in various areas.
Tourism and Landmarks
is Gold Coast City's main industry, generating
total revenue of $2.5 billion per annum. Gold
Coast is the most popular Queensland tourism location
with over 13,000 available guest rooms contributing
over $335 million to the local economy each year.
Accommodation options available range from backpacker
hostels to five star resorts and hotels. The most
common style of accommodation is three and four
star self-contained apartments.
tourist attractions include internationally renowned
surf beaches, World Heritage listed hinterland
national parks, and theme parks including, Dreamworld,
Sea World, Wet'n'Wild Water World, Warner Bros.
Movie World, WhiteWater World, Currumbin Sanctuary,
Fleays Wildlife Park, Australian Outback Spectacular
and Paradise Country. The Gold Coast also serves
as a gateway to further tourist destinations within
Queensland and Northern New South Wales, including
direct flight access to the Great Barrier Reef,
with flights departing daily to Lady Elliot Island.
its opening in 2005 the Q1 building has been a
popular destination for tourists and locals alike.
The observation deck at level 77 is the highest
of its kind in Queensland and offers expansive
views in all directions. The three Towers of Chevron
Renaissance have also become a local landmark.
Meter Maids were
introduced in Surfers Paradise in 1965 in an attempt
to put a positive spin on new parking regulations.
To avoid tickets being issued for expired parking,
the Meter Maids dispense coins into the meter
and leave a calling card under the windscreen
wiper of the vehicle. The Maids are still a popular
part of the Surfers Paradise culture but the scheme
is now run by private enterprise.
Gold Coast's education infrastructure includes:
Universities - Two major university campuses (Bond
University at Robina and Griffith University,
incorporating the Griffith Schools of Medicine
and Dentistry and Oral Health at the Gold Coast
Hospital and the main campus at Southport) and
the smaller campus of Central Queensland University
* TAFE - four campuses at Southport, Ridgeway
(Ashmore), Benowa and Coolangatta
* Schools - Many primary and secondary schools,
both public and private and of a variety of denominations.
Gold Coast Hospital at Southport is the city’s
major teaching and referral hospital and the third
largest in Queensland, attending to over 58,000
cases a year , and overseeing other services
of the Gold Coast Health Service District as its
head office. There is a second public hospital
situated in Robina but this second campus is smaller
and mainly comprises rehabilitation, psychiatric
and palliative wards along with a recently opened
of private hospitals also exist throughout the
city, notably Allamanda Private Hospital located
at Southport, Pindara Hospital at Benowa and John
Flynn Gold Coast Private Hospital at Tugun in
the city's south.
Transport on the Gold Coast, Queensland
Gold Coast has a wide range of public transport
modes including buses, rail and monorail. The
car is the dominant mode of transport for Gold
Coast but with the increasing population that
leads to more traffic congestion.
This has led to the Queensland State Government
and Gold Coast City council placing more effort
into providing public transport including a new
Ferry service and the proposed Rapid Transit System.
The Gold Coast's main provider of public bus services
is Surfside Buslines.
Coast Airport is located at Coolangatta, approximately
22 kilometres south of Surfers Paradise. Services
are provided to interstate capitals and major
cities as well as to major New Zealand cities.
Services are also available to some Asian countries
and when the new extended runway is completed
at the end of 2007 more Asian countries will be
available. A new terminal is also under way and
should be completed by 2009.
for the Gold Coast is sourced from Powerlink Queensland
at bulk supply substations which is provided via
the National Electricity Market from an interconnected
multi-State power system. In the early 1990s Australian
governments commenced a program of deregulation
of the electricity sector, which is progressively
being introduced in multiple phases known as tranches.
The Government-owned electricity corporation Energex
distributes and retails electricity, natural gas,
liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) and value-added
products and services to residential, industrial
and commercial customers in South-East Queensland.
Hinze Dam 15 km southwest of Nerang is the population's
main water supply. The Little Nerang Dam which
feeds into Hinze Dam can supplement part of the
city area's water needs, and both are managed
by the city council directorate Gold Coast Water.
Reforms of the way in which the water industry
is structured have been announced by the State
Government, with transfer of ownership and management
of water services from local government to the
state occurring in 2008-09. Gold Coast City Council
also sources water from Wivenhoe Dam, west of
Brisbane for northern suburbs when the Hinze Dam,
at one-tenth of Wivenhoe's capacity, becomes low.
Water shortage and water restrictions have been
current local issues, and a few new Gold Coast
residential areas have recently included dual
reticulation in their planning and development
to supply water from a new water recycling plant
being built concurrently. This will make available
highly treated recycled water for use around the
home in addition to potable water. The Gold Coast
has received world recognition for this scheme
in its Pimpama-Coomera suburbs. Gold Coast Water
has also been recognised for its world leading
HACCP water quality management system by the World
Health Organisation which published Gold Coast
Water's system as a good model for managing water
quality and safety from catchment to tap. A desalination
plant is currently under construction at Tugun
to supplement Southeast Queensland via a water
This article or section contains information about
planned or expected future infrastructure.
It may contain speculative information and may
change upon or during construction.
* A desalination plant is currently being built
* Raising Hinze Dam
* SEQ Water pipeline
Gold Coast Rapid Transit System a light rail or
bus rapid transport system running mainly along
Smith Street and Gold Coast highway from Southport
down to Coolangatta is expected to start construction
The existing heavy rail Gold Coast line will be
progressively extended to Coolangatta.
Pacific Motorway will be upgraded between Nerang
and Tugun to a four-lane corridor in both directions,
with the Tugun Bypass to be completed in 2008.