Fishing and croc-watching platform set to be re-built
Reel in the old and in with the new. This much outlines the resurgence of the once beleaguered Mowbray Bridge fishing platform, which will now form part of the multi-million dollar Wangetti Trail.
The State Government today announced the $5.7 million project at the ‘Mowbray North’ section of the Wangetti Trail, featuring a 2.25km mangrove experience boardwalk and 5km walking trail to Four Mile Beach.
The Wangetti Trail is a proposed iconic mountain bike and hiking trail in the coastal ranges between Palm Cove and Port Douglas.
The project is intended to be undertaken in two stages with the works on the Mowbray North portion to commence in the 2019 calendar year with the balance of the trail to be completed separately once further funding is secured.
The Old Mowbray fishing jetty was removed in February 2016 after inspections revealed a risk of catastrophic failure due to damaged girders and poor condition.
Council has since worked with the community to advocate for safety upgrades and reinstate the jetty.
The Mowbray North project stretches from Port Douglas south to the Mowbray River with construction expected to start in September.
Council’s calls for a visitors’ carpark and safety upgrades to the Captain Cook Highway have also been answered in the funding announcement.
The member for Cook, Cynthia Lui, said “this is big for the region and I can't tell you how excited I am. This announcement kicks off many stages of the Wangetti Trail.”
“It will bring in many visitors once it's completed. The current bridge will be integrated into the trail project.
“We are in a unique region here in FNQ. This project will showcase the natural assets of this region to the rest of the world, not only will it create an increase in jobs, it will open avenues to explore opportunities around eco-tourism,” she said.
Douglas Shire Mayor Julia Leu said it will provide a significant economic boost to the region and to Port Douglas; and provide an estimated 30 new jobs, and 11,000 increased visitors.
“I am thrilled to work in partnership with the state government; and having traditional owners involved in this project has been a significant driver from the beginning.
“The platform will bring people who want to experience this type of adventure. The $5.7 million is a really welcome announcement and I am looking forward to the constructing and building stages and seeing this in operation.
“We were very disappointed when this had to close. This is why this project is great; we will have our very popular fishing and croc-viewing platform back. It allows us to have a safe access and car parking area as well,” said Mayor Leu.
Karranjal John Hartley, Kuku Yalanji elder, said there are still a lot of heritage and native title issues to clear up.
“But we can all put that aside and see this project for what it is. If it will create long-term employment for people, we support it whole heartedly,” he said.
- Re-purposed Old Mowbray River Bridge
- Visitors’ carpark and safety upgrades to the Captain Cook Highway
- Crocodile viewing platform
- 2.25 km mangrove experience boardwalk
- 5 km trail to Four Mile Beach and Flagstaff Hill
- Indigenous business opportunities for construction, maintenance, guided walks and other activities.
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