Work to start on Gate­way

Port Douglas & Mossman Gazette - - NEWS -

“I’ve told them to have faith in the project, and now we’re start­ing to see the re­sults. “It’s hap­pen­ing.” A job expo at the Moss­man Gorge com­mu­nity on Tues­day at­tracted around 120 lo­cals keen to be in­volved in the project. “That was eye-open­ing,” Mr Gib­son said. “It was in­cred­i­ble to see so many in­dige­nous peo­ple show up to met the con­struc­tion man­ager, and put their hands up for jobs.”

ILC chair­per­son Shirley McPher­son de­scribed the long-awaited vis­i­tors’ cen­tre as “a shot in the arm” for the re­gional econ­omy.

“This ma­jor project is im­por­tant for the re­gional tourism in­dus­try and will de­liver badly-needed jobs and in­creased de­mand for lo­cally-sourced goods and ser­vices,” Ms McPher­son said.

“This project is a multi-mil­lion dol­lar in­vest­ment in the fu­ture of the North Queens­land tourism in­dus­try.

“The project will gen­er­ate up to 40 new lo­cal jobs im­me­di­ately when the Moss­man Gorge vis­i­tor cen­tre opens for busi­ness and up to 70 new jobs in the peak tourism sea­son.”

FKG’s con­struc­tion man­ager Heather Gard­ner said pre­lim­i­nary work on site would be­gin next week, with ma­jor con­struc­tion be­gin­ning early next year.

“The job expo was amaz­ing,” Ms Gard­ner said.

“We met so many peo­ple who were in­ter­ested in get­ting in­volved in the project.”

One of the terms of the con­tract en­sures at least eight in­dige­nous jobs in the con­struc­tion phase.

Mr Gib­son, who started the first tourism ven­ture at the Gorge in 1987, op­er­at­ing walk­ing tours out of a tin shed, said train­ing would be­come a higher pri­or­ity now that light could be seen at the end of the tun­nel.

“Over the next 12 months, we need to fo­cus on train­ing peo­ple up,” he said.

“Apart from the trainees who are com­ing into the project, we have another 20 staff cur­rently work­ing who need ex­tra train­ing in all ar­eas of the tourism busi­ness.”

The Gate­way precinct is ex­pected to be com­pleted by late next year.

The Gate­way will di­vert tourist traf­fic to the new modern vis­i­tor cen­tre, which will pro­vide park­ing for 200 ve­hi­cles, spe­cialised bays for tourist coaches, a café, art gallery and gift shop and cul­tural dis­plays.

The Cen­tre will use low-emis­sion shut­tle buses to safely take vis­i­tors into the heart of the World Her­itage listed rain­for­est area.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.