Plans for ‘major’ redevelopment of Hinterland site
PREMIER Annastacia Palaszczuk has vowed to buy a giant slice of the Gold Coast hinterland and transform it into a "major new eco-parkland".
Labor on Saturday will pledge to develop the parkland in the Currumbin Valley in a bid to boost hinterland tourism by promoting the "green behind the gold".
The new 148ha parkland would be one of the largest parks in Australia and feature:
* Recreational facilities for families, sporting clubs and schools;
* Protections for local koala habitats, including fodder eucalypt plantation;
* Eco-tourism facilities to support more tourism jobs;
* Nature-based recreational trails through 46ha of blackbutt forest.
The Pigabeen Road site is owned by the Neumann family who bought it in April for $15.25 million.
A development application for 348 dwellings on the site was previously approved by council.
Ms Palaszczuk said the project would "protect the Currumbin Valley environment so that both local residents and tourists could enjoy it well into the future".
"This simply would not have happened without the advocacy of (Labor's Currumbin candidate) Kaylee Campradt. She lives and breathes her community and knows how important commitments like this are," Ms Palaszczuk said.
"There's no doubt the southern Gold Coast has a unique character that places a premium on sustainability and conservation.
"This is also a big win for the local tourism industry on the southern Gold Coast, which is already benefiting from the world surfing reserve.
"The new eco-parkland will also hold significant environmental conservation, with the preservation of significant blackbutt forest and koala habitats."
If re-elected, the government will partner with the Gold Coast City Council on the project and negotiate with the current owners to buy the site at a fair market price.
The Bulletin understands the government will consider "all necessary options" to secure the land if negotiations fall through.
Under the plans being developed by the State Government, the parkland would remain outside the urban footprint, preventing it from being heavily developed.
Ms Campradt said the project would play a key role in bringing visitors back to the southern Gold Coast.
"Securing this 148ha parcel of land for community use is a really special decision that will preserve the environment for future generations to enjoy," she said.
"Once this land was gone it would be gone for good. I'm delighted to have been able to help save it for our community."
Originally published as Plans for 'major' redevelopment of Hinterland site