Moreton Bay Regional Council


Moreton Bay Priority Development Area, Petrie, Queensland

Traditional Place Name/ Indigenous Country







Urban Design

Landscape Architecture


460 ha mixed use master plan



Innovation and employment hub for the next generation of health & knowledge industries

The Mill at Moreton Bay is one of Queensland’s most significant Priority Development Areas (PDA’s) covering over 460ha of lands abutting the Petrie town centre and rail station. The Mill at Moreton Bay is underpinned by a world class polycentric city vision, co-created and authored by Archipelago. The master plan anticipates it role as a significant urban centre for the region and has been identified an important component of the Polycentric City Vision for Moreton Bay City.

The mixed use master plan is comprised of a major university campus for University of Sunshine Coast, a major private health precinct, advanced manufacturing, commercial mixed use, medium density residential with significant open space and recreational areas. Anchored and connected by major transport infrastructure, bounded to the east by an extensive riparian river and lakes corridor, The Mill at Moreton Bay will provide an enviable living and lifestyle offer required to attract key knowledge workers to this important project for the Region.

Archipelago has enjoyed an ongoing relationship with Moreton Bay Regional Council working on The Mill at Moreton Bay since 2019. As Principal Consultant, we have provided design leadership through architectural, master planning, urban design and landscape architectural services to Moreton Bay Regional Council, and subsequently to Millovate, in the development of the Urban Framework and Master Planned vision for the Priority Development Area.

What were the challenges?

As a large scale, long-term city making project, the challenges in this type of urban design project is unique and varied;

  • Long time horizons for the significant city making opportunity which is essentially starting from nothing.  
  • Elements of the future city in each part of the development as it progresses will need to be coherent. 
  • Reconcile competing visions between stakeholders and synthesise the research from our project partners into a coherent proposal.
  • Leading the design and implementation of infrastructure to facilitate the city vision involving hands on work with various disciplines to achieve best for city outcomes.

What were our solutions?

The project has been ongoing since 2019. Our achievements to date to have been to provide a proposal which satisfies the core elements of the brief which is flexible to adjust the vision as the project understanding evolves through the design process. 

Specific innovations include:

  • Recasting the Development Scheme to provide improved Structure Plan and negotiate through stakeholder engagement to achieve effusive support and approval
  • Structure planning that anticipates long term macro citymaking strategies
  • Normalising of street geometries to provide more rigorous urban framework
  • Elimination of large vehicle left turns which across the entire master plan made a saving of $10m in net outcomes whilst achieving improved pedestrian environment
  • Design demonstration and due diligence of various urban elements – hospital, advanced manufacturing, schools, Olympic venues, open space strategies
  • Incorporation of exemplar urban elements including; 
  • best practice subtropical main street
  • consolidated innovation precinct
  • proper street hierarchy separating emphasis on vehicular movement and people focussed streets
  • distinct mid-block laneways
  • Civic precinct overlay anticipating Olympic infrastructure 
  • Design development, documentation and delivery of stage 1 works

How did we add value?

The Mill is a complex important citymaking project and incorporates many diverse stakeholders. Our experience through this project reinforced lessons learnt on other major projects of this scale the Archipelago has undertaken.
- Design leadership is an important contributor to good outcomes on the ground
- Strategic design thinking enables stakeholders to connect to design decision providing certainty through advocacy for design decisions
- Creating the best for project language unites the participant in the common cause for excellence
- Decisions made early (example: the design vehicle for intersection design) have large impacts downstream. Robustness and flexibility is key to a working master plan that does not prevent the possible future
- The ‘doers’ are important to have at the table early so they can become champions for the design

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