Revitalising plans to Government

THE next step in the Airlie Beach main street development is set to take place next month when the Whitsunday Regional Council plans to meet with the State Government in an attempt to secure funding for the $47 million project.

Architect Gary Hunt has created a vision to revitalise the village.

Council hopes the project will “breathe life back” into the Airlie Village to further enhance its attraction as a tourist destination.

Council's chief executive officer John Finlay said Council understood the importance of long term sustainability for the Whitsunday area and the ongoing benefits of tourism.

Mr Finlay said Council also planned to engage in negotiations with Main Roads, Ergon and other general services to get the project off the ground.

Council and Enterprise Whitsundays want to create a green and vibrant hub within the heart of town and hoped the redevelopment would encourage visitors to lengthen their stay and perhaps even think of investing in the area to maintain regular visits.

Things high on the redevelopment agenda included the enhancement of the capacity of the storm water infrastructure which currently floods the main street in minor storm conditions ($9.3m) and a redirected traffic flow within the main street to cope with traffic volumes ($2.4m).

Airlie Creek rehabilitation and the creation of a central park are also on the agenda ($7.3m). It is envisaged there would be large shade trees, alfresco dining, public decks and a landscaped park on the foreshore if the project goes ahead.

Enterprise Whitsundays chief executive Andrei Koeppen said small businesses and developers desperately need the vision to further develop.

“It is the shot in the arm desperately needed for investor confidence in future development opportunities in the region and the sustainability of a small business,” he said.

Gary Hunt will be presenting the vision plans at the “Airlie After Hours” evening organised by Enterprise Whitsundays on September 2.

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