Planning reaps rewards

Following the opening of the Cairns Central Shopping Complex concerns were raised by traders that the heart of the CBD was now split. In addition, competition from three regional shopping centres was also impacting on this retail sector. As a result, Council is working closely with traders to find ways to revitalise the city centre.

Development of precincts and additional open space, particularly through the Esplanade Project, are just some of the components of Council's Development Control Plan for the CBD. Other major issues being addressed include improved parking and transport options.

Enhanced parklands, with the colour and variety of lush tropical vegetation North Queensland is famous for, all ensure the city centre is a people place, safe and comfortable.

Infrastructure works, including a new museum, the $4 million conversion of the Old Council Chambers to a library and the former Mulgrave Shire Offices becoming the headquarters for Tourism Tropical North Queensland, will also provide a boost for the CBD.

A Retail Strategy dovetails with the CBD Development Control Plan. Improved lighting and street design illustrates how Council and retailers are working together to use every possible marketing tool to improve the competitive edge of the area.

Businesses are encouraged to work together to help themselves. Marketing strategies and promotions organised by the CBD Advisory Committee have been very successful in attracting people back to the city centre.

Council has also put in place the Barron River Development Control Plan. Geared to careful environmental planning and management practices, this area includes the catchment of Cairns' next major water source.

Weed control, protection of flora and fauna and careful planning to avoid any adverse impact on this fragile environment are key aspects of the Plan. Home to some popular tourist attractions, including the Skyrail and Woolshed, the Plan must cater for a variety of interests.

For further information contact Paul Eagles, General Manager City Development, telephone (07) 4044 3044.