General FAQs

Overview

What is URBNSURF?

URBNSURF is the brand for the first ever surf park developments to be brought to Australia. We are creating unique, world class, urban surfing environments which ‘bring the beach to your backyard’.
The surf parks feature revolutionary, man-made, surf lagoons which use Wavegarden ‘Cove’ wave generating technology. The lagoons deliver high quality, authentic surf waves and create ideal conditions for surfing and other surf sports.

How big are the surf lagoons?

A standard lagoon measures approximately 155 metres in length by 155 metres in width, however the length and width of a lagoon can be varied to accommodate the requirements of particular sites.

What is the layout of the lagoon?

The lagoon is divided into different surfing zones. These include the ‘Peak’ zone in the central part of the lagoon, which is designed for experienced surfers and the ‘Bays’ which are located at each edge of the lagoon, which are perfectly suited to beginner and novice surfers.

What surfing experience is needed?

At URBNSURF we can accommodate non-surfers, beginners and improver surfers, through to expert surfers simultaneously. A performance pathway exists for guests to progress through the zones of the surf lagoon commencing in the ‘Bays’, and improving their skills until they are ready to take on the ‘Peak’ zone.

Waves

What types of waves can be generated?

The lagoon is capable of generating a variety of waves, from gentle, spilling beginner waves, right through to high-performance barrelling waves up to 2.0m in height. The size and speed of waves in the lagoon can be varied, making it suitable for all skill levels, from beginner to expert.

How are the waves made?

Waves in the lagoon are generated by moving water over a shallow profile that causes a wave to form, and then fold on itself – just like an ocean swell becomes a breaking wave when it moves over a reef or a sand bar. In the case of the Wavegarden ‘Cove’, water is moved by a mechanical device located along the central axis of the lagoon. The device displaces over 30 tonnes of water, and gets it moving at over 6 metres per second to create a perfectly formed surfing wave.

Are the waves always the same size and type?

Waves in the ‘Peak’ zone and the ‘Bays’ can be mechanically identical in size and shape (which creates an ideal training environment), but can also change to some degree in height and speed, and can also ‘section’. These variations can be created in real time during the course of a ride. Additionally, removable features can be added to the floor of the lagoon which create close out sections to enable airs and floaters to be performed.

Is the wave powerful, does it have ‘push’?

The beauty of the Wavegarden ‘Cove’ wave generating technology is that energy is constantly imparted into the wave through the movement of the wave generator as it completes a cycle. This ensures that waves have consistent power, shape, height and speed through the full ride.

Environment

Will URBNSURF be designed and operated sustainably?

Yes, the intention is for URBNSURF to incorporate a combination of LEED engineering, sustainable design, water catchment systems, photovoltaic systems, recycling/re-use of materials and local sourcing to help minimise any environmental impacts. An example is the decision to use recycled, high density polyethylene plastic (HDPE) as the liner for the lagoon rather than a concrete shell.

How much water is used in the lagoon each year?

The net evaporation rate for the lagoon will differ from region to region, but on average the annual water requirement is equivalent to that used to maintain a high quality turf sports oval of a similar size (and only about 6% of what is used to irrigate golf courses per annum).

How much noise is generated by the wave generator?

The wave generating equipment is essentially silent. The operation of the lagoon creates the natural sound of peeling waves, which has minimal overall auditory impact.

Will URBNSURF look like a natural environment?

We understand that surfing for lots of people is as much about being out in the environment as it is catching waves. We therefore want to create a destination for surfers and non-surfers that provides the feeling of being at one with nature. We will do this through the use of high quality soft landscaping, tree planting and natural materials.

Development

In what context can URBNSURF be developed?

URBNSURF is ideal as a stand-alone, community based, sport, recreation and leisure facility, or as a central feature in large scale, mixed-use, or residential development. It creates a completely new destination built around surfing and a beach based lifestyle.

How long does it take to build an URBNSURF surf park?

About 12 months from the commencement of works on site to the first waves being ridden by our guests.

How much does it cost to build an URBNSURF surf park?

The costs associated with the development of an URBNSURF park will vary depending upon the location and technical complexity of the site, and the scale of the development. The intention is to make sessions affordable so that surfing can be experienced by as many people as possible as regularly as possible.

Operations

What are the wave heights and ride lengths at URBNSURF?
Zone Wave Type Max. Wave Height Avg Length of Ride Avg Duration of Ride
The Peak Advanced 2.0 m 100 m 17 secs
The Bays Beginner 1.0 m 50 m 11 secs
How many waves are generated per hour?

The patented Wavegarden ‘Cove’ technology can provide breaking waves in the ‘Peak’ zone and the ‘Bays’ up to every 4 seconds, resulting in over 1,000 surfable waves per hour.

Is it easier to learn to surf at URBNSURF?

In short, ‘Yes!’ Beginners experience a vastly accelerated rate of learning in a Wavegarden ‘Cove’ compared to the ocean. The predictability of the waves generated in the ‘Bays’, the length of rides, and the removal of other distractions allows beginners to focus on technique, whilst enjoying closer supervision from surf coaching staff.

What about progression for experienced surfers?

Just like tennis or golf, progression in surfing depends on practicing; which is linked how regularly you surf and the number of waves you get to ride. Unlike other sports, surfing requires the right weather conditions being present, and for that to occur in daylight hours, at a time and place you are free to participate. At URBNSURF these inconveniences are removed, allowing surfers to surf as regularly as they choose, at whatever time best suits them. URBNSURF is also the ideal laboratory to advance your surfing with instant video feedback, consistent waves, training programmes with advanced and elite surfers, the advice of sports scientists and coaches, shapers and surf companies experimenting with new gear and technologies all under controlled conditions.

What other activities be available at URBNSURF?

At URBNSURF you will be able to surf, but also enjoy a wide range of additional activities and services that will create a fantastic destination for surfers and non-surfers alike. Activities that may be offered include splash pads and playgrounds for young children, beach styled family pools, rock climbing and bouldering, parkour, yoga classes, running track, MTB pump tracks, skate courses and half pipes, and group fitness training.

What will it cost to surf at URBNSURF?

There will be different pricing offered depending upon which zone of the lagoon a guest is surfing within, whether it is a peak or off-peak time period, and whether the guest is an adult or student/concession holder. Pricing for surf sessions and lessons will be announced in the months leading up to the opening of the facility.

Safety

Is surfing at URBNSURF safe?

Surfing under normal conditions is typically a very safe activity. URBNSURF is designed with safety as a fundamental priority. At URBNSURF, most of the hazards of ocean surfing are either avoided, managed or minimised to greatly improve surfer safety. The use of surf lifeguards specifically trained in the lagoon environment and video monitoring systems further enhances guest safety.

I’ve never surfed before – is it safe for me?

Absolutely! URBNSURF is a safe surfing environment perfect for people of all ages, most fitness and skill levels, and is ideal for introducing the sport of surfing to those who do not have access to waves. It is also a fantastic environment for persons with disabilities to learn to surf. With URBNSURF, ‘surfing is now for everyone’.

How do you ensure a surfers' safety from the wave generating device?

The wave generating device is located beneath a pier which physically separates the surfer from the device. The pier is shrouded in a mesh barrier that guests cannot penetrate, but allows water to pass through, and has no effect on the size, quality or shape of the wave.

Is it dangerous if a surfer falls off their board?

It is actually less dangerous at URBNSURF if a surfer falls off their board than in the ocean, as there are no submerged, non-visible hazards below the water surface, and no other surfers/surfboards in the line-up in the ‘Peak’ zone or the ‘Bays’ with which contact could be made.

Energy

How much energy is needed to generate waves?

The Wavegarden ‘Cove’ wave generator is the most energy efficient surfing wave generator available. An URBNSURF surf park requires about the same amount of energy per annum as would typically be used by a small, indoor aquatic centre.

Can renewable energy be used to power the wave generator?

Yes, the intention is to source all of the energy requirements of the facility from renewable sources, and to look to generate renewable energy on site through the use of solar PV panels and wind power generation systems.