Third Award | Institutional
Overall Focus: The intent of this project will endeavour to explore the strengths, weaknesses, constraints and opportunities within the town of Beenleigh, in Queensland Australia and provide a proposal which will re-invigorate the surrounding areas.
Participant Name: Adam Perring
University: Queensland University of Technology
Country : Australia
Students were asked to develop their own brief, program and design intents through global, regional and personal analysis, research into exemplars and previous scholarship. This project will generate recommendations and finalise with the possible future in which Beenleigh could achieve with the integration of these documented facilities.
Beenleigh is situated approximately halfway between the Gold Coast and Brisbane City in South East Queensland, Australia. Although a part of the Logan City Council, the town has shifted between three different councils in a short period of time resulting in minimal investment into community based infrastructure.
Food Production in a Global Context: According to a recent study investigating suicide rates in Queensland based job sectors, an individual was 2.2x more likely than the average person to commit suicide if they work within the agriculture sector (Andersen et al., 2010). This statistic is a worrying trend amongst one of the oldest and most crucial professions in the our current system of food production. Meanwhile one of the leading distributors of food to the general public within Australia, Woolworths Limited, posted a $3.75 billion dollar profit in the 2013-14 financial year. This disparity of serious social issues, coupled with the primary focus of economic prosperity for big business is a primary indicator for the global issues that surround food production.
A recent research report commissioned by the Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics and Sciences (ABARES) into land use management stated that there had been a 5.5% decrease in agricultural holdings primarily due to suburban sprawl (Leslie et al., 2013). This fact is only going to intensify the issues already stated.
Food Distribution in Beenleigh: During site investigations Beenleigh was not lacking opportunities to buy food via supermarkets and restaurants. There appears to be densification of these elements towards the central core of Beenleigh allowing these facilities to create networks between each facility. This though appears to be at the detriment of community facilities which benefit the disadvantaged.
According to the Queensland Council of Social Service (QCOSS, 2015) community service map, there are no current food banks, food charities or free food facilities within the city core of Beenleigh.
Food is a global issue, and with the current economic based model we are currently utilising there are serious concerns in regards to the social, environmental, cultural and economic sustainability. With the monopolisation of distribution centres, direct product to pollution, decrease in viable land for agriculture the situation will not get better. A change is needed otherwise the statistic of 2.2x could increase and that is something no individual would wish upon. The project must aim to counter-act this through alternative means of food production but also provide strong economic, cultural and social benefits to the Beenleigh Community
References: Andersen, K., Hawgood, J., Klieve, H., Kõlves, K., & De Leo, D. (2010). Suicide in selected occupations in Queensland: evidence from the State suicide register. Australian and New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry, 44(3), 243-249. Lesslie, R & Mewett, J. (2013). Land use and management: the Australian context. ABARES research report 13.1. Canberra, January. QCOSS. (2015). Logan City Service Map. Retrieved from: https://map.qcoss.org.au/service-list/Logan%20City?page=2 Mollison, B. (1991). Introduction to permaculture. Tasmania, Australia: Tagari.