2022 Regional Growth Award Winner

Moreton Bay Regional Council, QLD

Moreton Bay City

Morton Bay Regional Council, QLD—Morten Bay City

The Project

Moreton Bay Regional Council, one of Australia's fastest growing urban regions, is seeking reclassification as a city as it views this will empower it to seize greater opportunities for residents. Officially becoming a city could be the first step towards changing Moreton Bay's identity locally, nationally, and internationally for the benefit of its residents.

With greater status it will make it easier to advocate for investment in the region. Council wants to ensure the LGA reaps the benefits from its residents' taxes through funding from all levels of government being directed back into Moreton Bay. City classification will also support Council's ambitious economic development strategy to create 100,000 more local jobs and build a $40 billion economy.

Moreton Bay believes it can become a city that South East Queensland has not seen before. It will be a city of the future that celebrates its natural assets and offers unique, places for people to live, work, and play locally. This will deliver a better quality of life for the diverse residents of today and tomorrow. The LGA can leverage its existing urban form to become a polycentric city with multiple urban centres, which have significantly improved social and environmental outcomes compared to monocentric cities. The vision of Council to become a polycentric city will support spatial distribution of jobs close to where residents live translating into reduced commutes and improved housing affordability.

In addition to an economic assessment, Council initiated a significant community engagement program. The identified possible benefits align with community values, which was further verified through extensive community engagement. The consolidated results of engagement via surveys indicated the majority of residents are supportive or neutral (55%) regarding the reclassification.

Following a thorough evaluation of the impact of reclassification—and based on the identified benefits, improved social outcomes, and community support—Council endorsed formally requesting reclassification as a city via submission to the Queensland Minister for Local Government. This submission is currently being finalised and will ultimately be reviewed by the Local Government Change Commission if the matter is referred by the Minister.

The Award Category

This award recognises local government projects that:

  • improve the liveability of a region and take advantage of region specific opportunities
  • empower vibrant and connected regional communities that promote diversity and inclusion or
  • strengthen investment and development opportunities, share resources, build local capability, and create jobs.

Successful projects in this award category benefit communities by:

  • improving productivity, employment and workforce skills throughout the regions
  • valuing, protecting and promoting diversity, in particular Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander knowledge, cultures and traditions and
  • fostering the development of self-reliant communities and regions with strong economic futures.

See more