A Sanctuary at Sanctuary

Date Released - October 30, 2014.

Sanctuary Grove Estate, situated near the entry to pristine Bribie Island, is a fine example of how careful environmental management can enhance a community.

Urban planning studies have shown that parks, gardens, and green spaces in urban areas improve the wellbeing and the quality of life of residents.

One such study done in the UK over a 15 year period involving 5000 people confirmed what behavioural scientists call the ‘green space effect’.

Dr Matthew White at the European Centre for the Environment and Human Health found that individuals reported less mental distress and higher life satisfaction when they were living in greener areas.

For people living busy lifestyles in densely populated areas, being able to get outdoors and access green space is a great way to escape the stresses of day-to-day life.

“These kinds of comparisons are important for policy-makers when trying to decide how to invest scarce public resources, such as for park development or upkeep, and figuring out how much bang they’ll get for their buck,” said Dr White.

“This research could be important for psychologists, public health officials, and urban planners who are interested in learning about the effects that urbanisation and city planning can have on population health and well-being.”

QM Properties engaged landscape company Anembo to consult on Sanctuary Grove, which in turn has seen 25% of the estate being devoted to green space and community open space.

“There was already a proliferation of birds and other wildlife into the area,” said Brian Bird of Anembo. “We came up with a design that enhances the existing vegetation and reinforces the environmental character of the site.”

Brian’s plan utilises ‘bio retention’, in which storm water run-off is channelled through an artificial wetland system of sedges to create a lake.

The lake is also fringed with tufted reeds, cool shady melaleucas, and statuesque eucalyptus.

“The land was planted using principles of permaculture that enhance the existing ecosystem,” said Brian. “It was a very proactive environmental outcome.”

This solution is an elegant response to landscaping and creates a very liveable space for residents. The naturally occurring bush is enhanced by the water solution, turning the public space into a delightful landscape.

Anembo also introduced native fish into the lake, which act as pest control as they feed on unwanted insect larvae.

A boardwalk was constructed around the lake, which links up with bush trails through the estate. The boardwalk protects the native forest and also makes for an easy exercise option.

The lake has viewing areas and picnic cabanas, making it a quiet sanctuary for residents.

Sanctuary Grove is situated at Beachmere, on the road to Bribie, and offers both bush and beach leisure options.

“This is the most elevated acreage land in the area,” said QM Properties Sales Manager Damien Ross. “There are only a handful of blocks left, all around ¾ of an acre in size.”

Some blocks have views of Moreton Bay to the East and the Glasshouse Mountains to the West.

Despite its proximity to this high growth area, Sanctuary Grove is a quiet haven with a semi-rural atmosphere.

“The premise behind Sanctuary Grove was to create a haven that carefully worked with the natural surrounds of the area, which encompasses native trees, creeks, birds, and wildlife,” said Damien.

The current Sustainable Planning Act, through the SEQ Regional Plan, protects 85 per cent of the region from large scale urban development by restricting growth outside the urban footprint.

“This act will make future acreage land in the Moreton Bay Regional Council area, especially east of the Bruce Highway, extremely scarce,” he said.

“Sanctuary Grove gives buyers the opportunity to join a community of sea changers craving the peace and quiet of country acreage,” said Damien.