Res­cue the town

Whitsunday Times - - WHITSUNDAY VIEWS -

WHY does this coun­cil keep re-in­vent­ing the wheel?

A town plan is worked out one year, res­i­dents plan and build houses to that plan, then the white shoe brigade blows in over the hill with some hair-brained plan that will mag­i­cally pro­vide hun­dreds of jobs as long as they can build 100 shops, and how about an eight-storey build­ing to go with it?

No one is talk­ing about all the empty shops and units we al­ready have, or the peo­ple who will lose views, but don’t worry about that as they pre­pare to get into bed with them for that elu­sive pot of gold just over the hori­zon.

Why not fos­ter the small town im­age, set in an idyl­lic area and en­cour­age peo­ple to stay here for its re­lax­ing laid back ap­peal in­stead of glitz­ing it up to be a mini gauche Gold Coast?

A pre­vi­ous tourism boss said peo­ple won’t stay un­til you give them some­thing to do, un­til then we are just a park­ing lot while they go to the reef and is­lands.

We had the Loot for the La­goon drive which en­cour­aged politi­cians to kick in and we got the la­goon, then we stopped and we don’t even main­tain the la­goon any­more.

We need a Townsville style wa­ter park on the fore­shore, more walk­ing/bike tracks.

Coun­cil should have pur­chased Iris Camp­bell’s house, open­ing it up to the park and mak­ing it a tourist info cen­tre with art gallery and mu­seum/ cof­fee shop.

Th­ese are only small things but would be a start and we can res­cue the town’s fu­ture from the white shoe brigade, real es­tate agents and the vested in­ter­ests of peo­ple push­ing for the glitzy im­age.

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