Revitalising the city centre

Working in partnership with the Cairns Port Authority and State Government, Council believes three major projects are set to give a new lease of life to the CBD. The Cityport Project, Stage 2 of Cairns Convention Centre and the Esplanade Project will all impact dramatically on the City centre.

Although the CBD is a vibrant people place, competition from regional shopping centres provides a healthy situation. It encourages ongoing improvements and enhancements. The Cityport development includes world class marine facilities which will enhance port operations and its long term viability.

The project will boost Cairns' reputation as the prominent gateway to the Great Barrier Reef. Development of a water front precinct will link the City to the Inlet and complement the Esplanade Project.

Enhanced pedestrian access to the waterfront, marinas, modern terminal facilities for reef vessels, boardwalks, residential apartments, hotels and waterfront dining are all planned. With an estimated 1.5 million passenger movements across the wharfs each year, Cityport promises to provide a colourful, entertaining venue for the whole community.

The concept design for the Esplanade Project was selected recently by Council following extensive public consultation. People were first asked what they saw as the most desirable results from such a project.

Three concepts were then developed and released for community feedback. This input was a vital part of the final selection process. With the State Government providing funding of $5 million, this exciting project will cost $20 million.

It is expected to be completed to mark Australia's Centenary of Federation in 2001. The project includes the reclamation of some mudflat areas along the foreshore, construction of a man made swimming lagoon, a sandy beach and a small scale Southbank with shops and restaurants.

Stage 2 of the development of the Cairns Convention Centre will be funded through a $20 million grant from the State Government. Almost doubling the Centre's current capacity, this stage will provide additional space for trade exhibitions and an international basketball stadium. The basketball stadium will be home for the Cairns Taipans, recently accepted into the National Basketball League.

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