Mayor right to push projects that nurture tourist industry
JUST when some people in our community were, for some reason, wondering why we’d elected Tom Tate as our Mayor he has written a column in the Gold Coast Bulletin and reminded us all why 73% of voters elected him (‘We can’t let the NIMBYs set the tone’, GCB. 13/5/18). He’s probably just lost a few votes with environmentalists and retirees but at least we know where he stands!
Sure Tom has gotten a few minor things wrong along the way but his vision and direction is very much on the right track. We’ve had a mix of good, bad and apathetic leaders over the decades I have lived on the Gold Coast but Tom is easily the best Mayor we have had in the last 30 years or so.
We have a diversity of industry and commerce in our City but let’s not forget that our cornerstone has always been and remains tourism. We have brilliant beaches and waterways as well as world heritage listed rainforests, theme parks, top notch shopping centres first class restaurants and nightclubs. We will always be a tourist mecca but we need to nurture and develop our tourist industry. A cruise ship terminal (accessed without entering the Seaway) is a no-brainer. We want thousands of tourists hopping off cruise ships every week spending money here ..... and who wants to cruise into the Bris-Vegas river with scenic views of old wharves and industrial buildings en route to wonderful attractions (like .... um ..... err ..... the Story Bridge and Mt Cootha?) when the Gold Coast is so close anyway!
A hinterland cableway should get a quick nod of approval too. Anyone who’s been on the Skyrail in Cairns would know it has negligible impact on the environment, attracts a lot of customers and educates a lot of urbanites about the environment.
Another casino? Absolutely! Bring it on – but not on The Spit or in sleepy Southport please! It needs the right location. Why reinvent the wheel? Around the world casinos work better clustered together like in Macau and Las Vegas. Let’s put it anywhere between Cavill Ave and Hooker Blvde.
Why stop at two casinos though? Light and heavy rail linked to the airport is similarly a must but let’s not forget the road network either. The continued upgrading of the M1 and the construction of a new M2 is essential. The recent “band aid” upgrading of Bundall and Bermuda Roads was of some help but it’s high time we blew the dust of the plans for the long mooted additional bridge crossings over the Nerang River through Sorrento and Benowa.
All of this development needs to be undertaken with appropriate sensitivity and concern for all residents and our environment. We understand the surfing community want minimal disruption to their surfing breaks and that environmentalists play an important role too. We need jobs, industry and prosperity though. We want jobs and I want my kids to have jobs and careers on the Gold Coast and we need sustainable development and new attractions to facilitate this.
All these competing interests need to be balanced but in the end we need leaders with vision and commitment for our city who are prepared to actually make decisions and move forward. After all that is why we have a Council.
Tom Tate and his more enlightened members of the Council have that.
To our avid environmentalists and retirees who don’t want to see anything change remember that you have options. If you want to live a in a region where nothing gets done because of vocal minority interests and warring Councillors and where infrastructure, services and development do not even remotely keep pace with demand you need only move just south of the border and pretend it’s still 1972. (Careful though as you can’t even get public hospitals built down there without protests!)