All-tide boat ramp plan on the rise
A PROPOSAL for an all-tide boat ramp for the communities of Dingo Beach and Hydeaway bay has been refloated, thanks to the efforts of local resident and keen fisherman Warren Hardy.
The long-term Hydeaway Bay resident is asking council to consider his proposal for an all-tide boat ramp off the eastern side of Blackcurrant Island, where there is a natural deep water channel, even at low tide.
Mr Hardy said the idea of building an all-tide boat ramp within the Cape Gloucester district was first floated in 2004 but, after amalgamation, had fallen off council’s radar.
Late last year, the current president of Gloucester Sports and Recreation Association contacted the council asking about the Blackcurrant Island proposal.
There are currently no alltide boat ramps servicing the communities of Hydeaway Bay, Dingo Beach and Nelly Bay.
This means there are only certain windows during the day that boats can launch from and return to shore, presenting a safety hazard for boaties who need to come ashore quickly.
The nearest all-tide boat ramps are in Bowen and Cannonvale.
The long-term Hydeaway Bay resident said he understood that boat ramps did not appear overnight, explaining that his goal was to get Whitsunday Regional Council to support his push and submit a Recreational Boating Facility Capital Project Proposal to the State Government.
“All-tide boat ramps are inherently safer than part-tide ramps,” Mr Hardy said.
“There are a number of benefits to council pursuing this proposal – it would not require dredging, it’s not in a fish habitat zone, there would be no increase in traffic flows through Hydeaway Bay or Dingo Beach, traffic and parking would be well away from residential areas, the ramp could toe out well below the lowest tide, and it could support a future Volunteer Marine Rescue facility.”
Mr Hardy’s plan has inprinciple support from Mayor Jennifer Whitney, and a report from the former State Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry indicated the proposed location would “meet most of the acceptable outcomes of the State Development Assessment Provisions.”
Mr Hardy met with council to discuss the proposal yesterday afternoon.
Councillors will inspect the island today.
Search Blackcurrant Island at www.change.org for more about the proposal or to sign the petition.