The Whitsunday council are pushing for the Department of Transport and Main Roads to change their plans for a boat ramp at Shute Harbour. Picture: Supplied
The Whitsunday council are pushing for the Department of Transport and Main Roads to change their plans for a boat ramp at Shute Harbour. Picture: Supplied

’Completely unsatisfactory’: Council pushes for ramp change

THE council is pushing to change plans floated for a boat ramp at Shute Harbour after a government proposal was deemed "completely unsatisfactory".

Mayor Andrew Willcox said the Department of Transport and Main Roads had outlined plans for upgrades to the fixed boat ramp at Shute Harbour.

The upgrades are part of a $4 million state government commitment for upgrades to boat ramps across the Whitsundays, which was made during the previous election.

Cr Willcox was concerned the designs put forward by TMR were not the most suitable option for the region, saying a fixed structure would pose problems for boaties.

"You can only ever use one section of the pontoon at a time," he said.

Whitsunday Regional Council mayor Andrew Willcox hoped funding could be channelled into a new ramp at Grubby Bay. Picture: Jordan Gilliland
Whitsunday Regional Council mayor Andrew Willcox hoped funding could be channelled into a new ramp at Grubby Bay. Picture: Jordan Gilliland

"You can only go where the tide will allow you to go so you have a lot more congestion.

"The other problem with it is that when the tide comes in and out … it ends up slimy and slippery and our residents and visitors may come down there and end up slipping over."

During the ordinary council meeting this week, Division 1 councillor Jan Clifford echoed Cr Willcox's concerns, saying the proposed design was "completely unsatisfactory".

"I would rather not have it because it's dangerous," she said.

Instead, the council will propose boat ramps with floating pontoons at Grubby Bay, which is a separate area located near Shute Harbour.

"They'll be able to have floating walkways away from the wave action and will be all tide," Cr Willcox said.

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"(We will) then have a significant amount of boat and trailer parking, which we're in desperate need of in the Whitsundays."

Cr Willcox has requested to meet with Transport and Main Roads Minister Mark Bailey to come to a solution.

"I think we should be putting to the Minister that we use the money more wisely," he said.

"What we would like to do is have the money that is currently earmarked for the upgrade of the boat ramp to go towards helping us with the Grubby Bay project."


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