Preserving open space by future-proofing Federal Golf Club with an integrated

retirement community

Our Partner


Federal Golf Club sought out a specialist seniors living owner and operator to partner with. Mbark is a family business specialising in partnering with community organisations on retirement communities, with two completed communities in Berry, NSW and Cobbitty, NSW.

The Proposal


The proposal at the Club incorporates a retirement community that will:

  1. Integrate into and complement the existing golfing activities and operations

  2. Provide the capital needed to complete urgently required upgrades to water security and storage

  3. Diversify the Club's long-term income sources

  4. Introduce additional members

  5. Achieve excellent environmental outcomes for the community

  6. Underpin the tenure of Federal Golf Club to ensure its longevity is secured for the community


Specifically, the proposal includes retirement housing of up to 125 residences that are purpose designed and built.  A mixture of 62 freestanding homes, 24 town homes and 39 apartments (maximum 3 stories) will be incorporated, across a mix of 1, 2 and 3 bedroom options.  It is expected that the completed community would comprise around 200 residents and 350 bedrooms. The proposal also includes a new clubhouse building to replace the existing aging and capital-intensive facilities and provide a social hub for Club members, seniors living residents and the broader community.


The current proposal is sited in and around the existing clubhouse and car park precinct for the course, and does not adjoin neighbouring properties or the Red Hill Nature Reserve. Current concept plans can be viewed below. In August 2018, we also added a Fact Sheet, which contains some details on the scale and positioning of the proposed development, golf course changes, planned construction access arrangements, and an indicative siting and works plan.

Fact Sheet
Site Context
Proposed Urban Design
Proposed Landscaping
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How We Will Achieve This

For a retirement living proposal to be successful, the Club must follow the process required by ACT Planning Legislation, which can be summarised as follows:

  1. Seek to deconcessionalise only that part of the existing club lease which is required for construction of the retirement living village and facilities

  2. Variation to the ACT Territory Plan – importantly we will only seek to add the use of a retirement community to the existing Plan colour, we will not seek to change the underlying classification of the land

  3. The Lease Variation Charge process will be applicable and will be followed, including seeking any remissions which may be applicable and available to the proposal and to any other development proposals being assessed by the the ACT government through the legislative framework

  4. A standard Development Application submission and assessment process under the ACT legislative process will be followed

In October 2017 the Legislative Assembly passed a motion requiring an Integrated Plan to be prepared for the Red Hill Nature Reserve and surrounding residential areas. The Club strongly supports the protection of the Reserve and has been working with the Environment, Planning and Sustainable Development Directorate on the Integrated Plan.


The Club has spent 3 years working with the community, environmental groups and technical experts to understand the potential impacts a development could have on the Reserve. It is proud to state that the current proposed development scale, type and location will have no detrimental impact on the Reserve.

In terms of physical works:

  1. All works would be governed by a Construction and Environmental Management Plan (CEMP) with particular focus and consultation on any areas or interfaces with increased environmental sensitivity;

  2. All existing access points to the Club would be maintained and improved;

  3. Early works will focus on improving water security and distribution as a priority;

  4. Civil works and housing are likely to be delivered on a staged basis;

  5. Construction of the new clubhouse would be delivered on a staged basis to allow the Club to continue as close to normal operations as possible;

  6. An opportunity exists to construct a safer intersection between Gowrie Drive and Red Hill Drive with improved sight lines and dedicated turning bays.

  7. Similarly, the safety of Gowrie drive can be improved within the existing road alignment.  Since widening the road is likely to encourage greater vehicle speeds a strategy of localised periodic widening to continue to limit speeds but allow safe passing is preferred.

  8. Emergency vehicle access would be augmented via a proposed gated link from Brereton Street into the Club's land.

The purpose of this website is to follow the progress of a possible active and connected community for retirees and over 55’s as part of Federal Golf Club.


A program of extensive consultation has commenced with a wide ranging group of stakeholders to help shape a proposal that brings significant benefits to both the future residents and the broader community.  As the consultation continues this website will capture the discussions, concerns, concepts in a single place to make it convenient for those with an interest in the proposal to access the current information and also to avoid any misinformation being presented relating to the form, status or progress of any proposal.


We look forward to working with the interested and engaged stakeholder groups to deliver an outcome that is shaped by consultation, responsive to the needs of the community and world class in the active and connected lifestyle it provides for those who will call it home.

© 2018 Active and Connected

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Proposed Urban Design

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