When Caloundra and later the Sunshine Coast Council Council purchased and joined together 2 dairy farms in North Maleny – Armstrongs in 1995 and Porters in 2006 – they could not quite have imagined what a rare opportunity they were bestowing upon the residents and families of Maleny and beyond. Many years later and after much – and often passionate – debate and consultation, what became the Maleny Community Precinct is today a fantastic 128 hectare asset for all to share. More than 50,000 trees have been planted by members of the community, working with council to improve our environment. Many different facilities and experiences have been developed and are now in use by the organisations who created them, providing enjoyment that’s shared by the families of Maleny and visitors to the town alike.
What Has Been Achieved?
Sunshine Coast Council invited mixed uses on their land, beginning with setting aside enough land for a community golf course – as stipulated in the contract of sale with the Porter family. The final approved Master Plan allowed for:
- a heritage precinct (State Heritage listed Pattemore House, and Heritage Trail)
- environmental areas (riparian tree plantings and wetlands restoration)
- ecological zones
- sport and recreation
- residential land
- a 4.5 km network of walking trails connected to the town, including Heritage, Poetry and Sculpture Trails
After years of discussion, planning and business cases, Sunshine Coast Council created leases for the following organisations, who are now responsible for the careful development of their leased areas: the map shows where their leases are located on the Precinct. The grey areas indicate non-leased land still held by Council.
- Maleny District Sport & Recreation Club
- Barung Landcare
- Maleny Golf Club
- Unity Water
- Friends of Pattemore House
Additionally, these groups have sub-leases and/or agreements to operate from the Maleny Community Precinct:
- Maleny Contract Bridge Club Inc.
- 5th Light Horse Troop Maleny Regiment Inc.
The Sunshine Coast Dark Sky Astronomers also invite the public to meet with them regularly at their HQ, Maleny Golf Club, to share the wonders of the night skies via 4 of the largest public viewing telescopes in SE Qld. Their efforts have seen the Astronomical Society of Australia officially declare their operations as the Maleny Observatory!
Barung Landcare are working towards their goal to build a world-class Environment and Education Centre.
UnityWater has restored significant wetlands on their leased area, whilst monitoring nutrient release data through a series of trials they are presently conducting. A new network of internal walking trails, designed to dovetail with the popular Maleny Precinct Trail, was opened in October 2020 on the UnityWater lease, providing public access to the Northern Wetlands, much to the joy of birdwatchers and walkers alike. The nature trail network offers an easy walk through the wetlands with the chance to observe many native bird species, frogs and aquatic wildlife.
With land still available, the Sunshine Coast Council continues to work with the community and interested community organisations to create even more facilities and experiences close to the heart of Maleny on the Maleny Community Precinct.