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The Gold Coast Bulletin - - YOUR VOICE -

THE city coun­cil ig­nored the 66-year-old wish of a gen­er­ous bene­fac­tor in its des­per­ate bid to sell the Surfers Par­adise Tran­sit Cen­tre.

In 1938, with dreams of a sprawl­ing park in the mid­dle of the city, late Surfers Par­adise res­i­dent Charles Joseph Hicks gifted a large and valu­able par­cel of land to the coun­cil.

The con­di­tions of the deed for­bade the sale of the land, the Neal Shan­non Park, and in­structed it be pre­served as a recre­ational re­serve for mem­bers of the pub­lic.

How­ever, in its push to sell off the Beach Road site to de­vel­op­ers, the coun­cil ob­tained le­gal ad­vice which al­lowed it to side­step those re­quire­ments and re­ject Mr Hicks’s wish.

Mr Hicks’s grand­son, 46year-old Labrador res­i­dent Charles Hicks said his grand­fa­ther would ‘turn in his grave’ if he knew what was planned for his land.

“When he trans­ferred that prop­erty he was un­der the im­pres­sion it would re­main the land of the com­mu­nity for­ever, he wanted ev­ery­one to be able to en­joy it,” he said.

“He would be re­ally hor­ri­fied. All he wanted was for the land to be turned into a large park for Gold Coast res­i­dents.’’

He said his grand­fa­ther would not have given up the land if he had known it would be sold.

“The whole fam­ily are re­ally upset about this. This was his legacy.”

Amid con­cerns about a lack of park­ing in the CBD, coun­cil­lors de­cided to sell the site, de­mol­ish the tran­sit cen­tre and the Bruce Bishop Car Park and get rid of Neal Shan­non Park.

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