A Little Street business operator fears the Forster Waterside Renewal Project and the inclusion of a boardwalk put forward by Great Lakes Council, could be lost forever.
The project, which was first discussed in the 1990s and revisited in 2014, included the construction of a shared elevated cycle way/boardwalk across existing street parking in Memorial Drive past the Amaroo, Dive Forster and Red Spot to the park opposite the Lakes and Oceans.
According to an original document, objectives included identifying the special character of the existing boat-sheds and trees.
Former Great Lakes traffic engineer, Wade Holmes said there was an opportunity to extend the northern end of Memorial Drive along the foreshore into areas where priority had been given to car parking in one of Forster’s most beautiful spaces.
“Council is looking to create a space that prioritises recreation and pedestrian activity.
There has been a lot of thought go into this.Ronald Hunter
“Council has developed a plan that aims to give the foreshore back for people to enjoy, beautifies the surrounding landscape, and provides a unique and gorgeous backdrop to the waterside shopping precinct.”
However, Dive Forster at Fisherman’s Wharf owner/operator, Ron Hunter said that vision had been lost.
Mr Hunter, who was in the middle of a redevelopment project of Fisherman’s Wharf, believed the construction of a raised boardwalk would enhance the area and assist businesses.
Construction of the new Fisherman’s Wharf was expected to restart before the Christmas-New Year holidays following a handful of unforeseen hurdles.
Mr Hunter said the project would be finished within four months.
Designed to reflect the area’s old boat sheds, the two level building would include a bar, cafe and restaurant along with the Dive Forster office.
Keen to give MidCoast Council a nudge, the project would include a three metre wide, undercover, timber boardwalk, running the length of the new building.
“There has been a lot of thought go into this,” Mr Hunter said.
“And, there will be a few surprises as well.”
Mr Hunter said the project would provide the link to the existing boardwalk.
He said the board walk had also been a Crown Lands concept.
According to a spokesperson from MidCoast Council, consultants Advisian has been engaged to provide an audit of the existing condition of the Memorial Drive foreshore (seawall and boardwalk) and a detailed design brief for maintenance and upgrade of the facility.
“Although this project is currently unfunded, the design brief will allow council to apply for funding to maintain the existing boardwalk and to implement measures to protect the foreshore area from erosion, while ensuring the area can best continue to provide public amenity and access to the water
This project is the next stage in the Forster Waterside Renewal Project, which has been an ongoing project over many years, beginning in the late 1990s with the first improvements to the Memorial Drive foreshore, and including the completion of upgrades to Memorial Drive in 2016.”