History of Carlyle Gardens, Townsville

Carlyle Gardens Retirement Resort Townsville history, based on public information within web pages and press releases from Prime Trust and other former retirement village owners.

The Green Group

The Green Group were a private, Bundaberg Queensland based, Green family owned retirement village developers and operators for several decades, from the 1970's. Their retirement village organisation now appears to operate in Victoria as Choice Retirement Communities. I gather that Green Family Estates developed and operated Argyle Gardens Bundaberg (323 houses), and the Carlyle Gardens Retirement Resorts, Carlyle Gardens Bargara (near Bundaberg, now operated by Meridien Retirement Living), Carlyle Gardens Mackay (283 houses planned), and Carlyle Gardens Resort Townsville (380 houses), all in Queensland.

Prime Trust Takes Over

The Prime Retirement & Age Care Property Trust were negotiating about buying Carlyle Gardens around January 2007, and took over ownership of the Carlyle Gardens properties around April 2007 for $49.5 million. Carlyle Gardens Townsville had over 380 houses, and approvals from Thuringowa Council for another 313 houses in November 2006. Prime Trust were listed on the Australian Stock Exchange (ASX) on 3 August 2007 (code PTN).

By June 2008, Prime Trust had started expanding Carlyle Gardens, aiming at an eventual $170 million expansion to 720 homes, plus age care and serviced apartments. It rapidly built a 500-seat auditorium, bar and restaurant and gym. Prime Trust also commenced a sales campaign featuring actual residents in brochures, billboards and shopping centre displays devised by DesignFirm. ZingSpace revised the landscape master plan into a single focal point. Sea O2 advised on sustainable development.

Management Take Over

Lend Lease Primelife took over day to day management of Carlyle Gardens, Townsville in January 2009. Village Manager and staff on site were unchanged. Lend Lease PrimeLife have considerable experience in retirement village ownership and operations.

Village Square

The Carlyle Gardens Village Square community area completed in 2008 includes the 700 seat Carlton Theatre auditorium, and the adjoining Cricket's bar and the associated Ball & Wicket restaurant then organised on a commercial basis by Carlyle Commercial Management. There is the library, the arts and crafts room, gymnasium, the computer club room, and a professional centre with a hairdresser. The area also includes the resort administration, main project management for the new construction, and sales area. Adjoining is a heated swimming pool and a bowling green with night lighting. There is also a well equipped woodwork and metalwork hobby shop a little distance away.

Carlton Theatre was provided by Prime Trust with around $6,000 of new audio video equipment in early 2008. Geoff Dillon installed and fine tuned the sound system.

< href="swimming_pool.xhtml">The swimming pool outside Cricket's bar had solar heating, a pool blanket and a hand rail upgrade in early 2008.

Ring Road at Beck Drive

The Shaw Road section of the Ring Road is an extension from Hervey’s Range Road to Dalrymple Road. The Condon Road section of the Ring Road connects the Douglas Arterial/Upper Ross River Road at Condon to Hervey’s Range Road and Shaw Road. This includes bridges over the Bohle River and Little Bohle River, and an overpass at Beck Drive. The AusLink Ring Road being built by Thiess is a new route for the national highway through Townsville and Thuringowa. The A$119 million contract started in April 2007. It involved extending the Ring Road a further seven kilometres. The Australian Government Department of Transport and Regional Services reported on the access at Beck Drive to the Ring Road, although the actual PDF comes from Main Roads, Queensland. There is no access via Beck Drive. Carlyle Gardens residents can use the Upper Ross River Road interchange by driving down Gouldian Avenue. The Ring Road had passed Carlyle Gardens by the end of 2008. It was scheduled to be complete by the end of 2008.

New Carlyle Gardens West Homes 2008

In 2007, JMS Civil and Mining started haul, dump and compact fill for the Carlyle Gardens earthworks, plus the car park and civil infrastructure. 120 semi-trailers of fill per day.

Carlyle Gardens Townsville is constructing 67 new homes in Stage A of the first of a new set of streets at Carlyle West (The Far Side) in 2008. Concrete bases were complete by September 2008. Framing was also up.

Landscaping work started at the Southern end of Stage A by September 2008, and was looking very nice by early December 2008. The Entry Park at Smith Street was up in September 2008. Smith and Bowhunter Streets were completed and handed over to Townsville council in September 2008. The bridge between Carlyle East and West was completed and covered in stone (local granite), however Ergon have to move a power cable underground.

The house builders expect to have many of the 67 Stage A houses complete by Xmas 2008. Final defects checks were delayed until September 2009.

Landscaping between houses should include a screen of Lillypilli through the centre, with some Grevillea or Callistemon. Colourful plants on the outside, Acalypha Inferno, Fire Storm, and Variegated Hibiscus.

Stage B consists 110 homes, from Village Green west of Stage A, and to the Northern boundary. Earthworks and civil works commenced. Construction was originally expected to commence 2009. Due to the global financial crisis, a smaller expansion is likely, at a much later date.

Carlyle Medical Centre

Carlyle Gardens Townsville had existing permission from Thuringowa Council for a future medical centre in another area of the retirement resort. In early 2008, Dr Richard Jiang applied for permission to run a six consulting room Carlyle medical centre on a 370 square metre area at Carlyle Gardens Retirement Resort, Townsville. This would have up to six medical practitioners on site, and six other staff. Townsville council approved a material change of use of the disused Carlyle Club sales office and community area near the resort entrance at 60 Beck Drive, Condon. See plans for medical centre at Carlyle Gardens Retirement Village (care 9.2 MB pdf).

Carlyle Manor Serviced Apartments

Construction was originally expected to commence in May 2008. The three storey Carlyle manor building behind Carlyle Square should include 48 one bedroom and 18 two bedroom apartments, each with their own balcony. There will be a 90 seat dining room, and a nurses station. The existing resort kitchen will be expanded to meet the needs of serviced apartment residents. This expansion has been put on hold due to the global financial crisis, and may not be built.

Age Care Facility

90 Age Care places should have development approved by council by September 2008, for Carlyle West (The Far Side). It is possible that development will be done at arms length and independent of Carlyle Gardens, to help meet government requirements.

Buttenshaw Library

The Buttenshaw library was named in memory of Norrie Buttenshaw, who was appointed Mayor of Carlyle Gardens. Norrie and Doreen were the first residents of Carlyle Gardens, in April 1997.


Replanting of a garden in August 2008. A screen of Lillypilly through the centre, with the odd Callistemon or Grevillea here and there. Outside will be colourful plants. Variegated Hibiscus, Acalypha Inferno, Fire Storm and others.