Kylie Drysdale, of the Whitsunday Regional Council, at the Main St pop-up shop.
Kylie Drysdale, of the Whitsunday Regional Council, at the Main St pop-up shop. Peter Carruthers

Proserpine shapes its future

AFTER extended periods of community consultation, the Proserpine Master Plan is set to embark on an idea evaluation process.

Addressing the Proserpine Chamber of Commerce last week, Whitsunday Regional Council's manager of strategic planning, Kylie Drysdale, delivered a progress update on the plan, its goals and the methodology applied to prioritising community ideas.

Ms Drysdale said the goals were to develop a master plan for the Proserpine area which would drive urban growth, economic development and tourism during the next four years.

And she spoke of a holistic market plan-type approach to progress in Proserpine.

"An actual market plan is an overall development concept that includes urban design, landscaping, infrastructure services, circulation present and future land use. It consists of three dimensional images, text, diagrams, statistics, maps and anything we can possibly throw into it,” she said.

"Its not just a town plan we have been working on the last couple of years, it's not just a llandscaping plan, not an economic development strategy; it is essentially all encompassing of those things.”

Ms Drysdale said a former plan had been developed in 2010 that suggested 21 "action items”.

"But unfortunately it lacked any implementation program, any feasibility (but there was) a bunch of great ideas, some of which we have manipulated, extracted, reused and things you have told us and are still asking for,” she said.

The public consultation is stage two of the plan and time will be taken at the end of February to assess ideas.

A draft document will then be prepared by April or May, and the implementation process will begin in August.

"My aim is to get back to you the community about your ideas, how we treated each one and how we implement each one,” Ms Drysdale said.

"The ideas have been fantastic so far. Improved signage is one we have been hearing a lot. The RV stop (has also featured). My personal favourite is statues at the entrance to the town, a tourism map, entertainment centre upgrades and a water park.”

General beautification of the town is an issue that is expected to be targeted by the plan.

"We are looking at strategies on how to get that done whether it be... a council-run initiative or whether it needs to be an incentive program for business or property owners,” Ms Drysdale said.

During her address, Ms Drysdale also outlined how ideas gained through the community consultation process would be prioritised, these being:

Is it technically feasible?

Is it economically viable?

How will it benefit the community?

Next week the Whitsunday Regional Council will visit the Proserpine State High School and invite students to pitch ideas for the plan.

Public submissions close on Tuesday, February 28.


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