SURFACE UPGRADE: Principal Michael Hurst and member for Gladstone Glenn Butcher discuss funding to upgrade the 'unofficial' carpark at Boyne Island State School.
SURFACE UPGRADE: Principal Michael Hurst and member for Gladstone Glenn Butcher discuss funding to upgrade the 'unofficial' carpark at Boyne Island State School. Mike Richards GLA040717CPARK

'A long time coming': School's car park nightmare to end

IT'S BEEN a long time coming but it will soon be a lot safer to drop off and pick up your kids from Boyne Island State School.

An upgrade to the school's "unofficial" gravel car park was yesterday given the official go-ahead.

Principal Michael Hurst said the school had been lobbying for more parking spaces for over a decade.

"I know I wrote my first letter when I started here nine years ago," he said.

"People were parking on footpaths, they were parking in driveways, calling their kids out into the middle of the road to jump into the car because there were no car parks around."

Mr Hurst said gravel had been laid since the school began using the land as a car park, but this had also caused safety issues.

"You could see people were spinning their wheels, not through negligent driving but just because it's a slippery surface," he said.

"(Parents) will be thrilled. Now they'll have marked spaces and safe, marked, pedestrian pathways."

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The land in question previously belonged to the Department of Housing, but had been used as a car park by parents and staff at the school for years.

Gladstone MP Glenn Butcher recently oversaw the transfer of that land to the Department of Education, and was at the school yesterday to announce the surface upgrade.

"The traffic congestion and lack of parking at school pick-up and drop-off times has been a real safety concern for parents and staff for a long time, which is why it is so great to see money being allocated to fixing this issue," he said.

"This funding is about supporting local jobs and pay packets for local families, and the flow-on trade for our small business operators here in Gladstone."

The new car park is expected to accommodate more than 60 cars, with two disability parking spaces.

The upgrade will cost $500,000, with construction expected to begin soon.

The State Government will contribute half the funds, while Gladstone Regional Council will pick up the rest of the tab.



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