REVEALED: Bird’s eye view of new East Shores stage
HUNDREDS of people soaked up the sunshine and atmosphere of Gladstone's premier new attraction East Shores stage 1B after the fences came down yesterday morning.
The absolute waterfront parkland features the Auckland House cafe, the multi-use cruise ship passenger terminal, boot camp facilities, a big-screen outdoor theatre, amphitheatre, basketball hoops and additional barbecue facilities.
The new precinct will also be the new home of the Gladstone Maritime Museum when it is relocated, which will work in conjunction with tours of the HMAS Gladstone.
Hutchinson Builders, who helped deliver the multi-award winning East Shores 1A precinct to the community in 2014, partnered yet again with GPC to deliver 1B.
The first sod was turned on July 6, 2019, with more than 300 mainly local people employed in the construction of $29.5 million showpiece.
Gladstone Regional Council Mayor Matt Burnett, Gladstone Ports Corporation chair Peter Corones, GPC People, Community and Sustainability General Manager Rowen Winsor and GPC Acting Operations, Asset Management and Project Services General Manager Ged Melrose showed media the facilities yesterday.
"This is awesome," Cr Burnett said.
"It's fantastic to see it open on the Monday so people can come and enjoy it throughout the week rather than have a big function, which will happen later in the year when we can, but at the moment its just spectacular.
"I invite everyone in the Gladstone region to come and check it out and right around Central Queensland, if you're in Rocky, Bilo, in Bundy or wherever, come and check it out, it is fantastic"
Cr Burnett said the project was initially touted in 2002 and it was wonderful to see such a world-class facility in Gladstone.
"It's fantastic to see the port put this money in, obviously there's a lot of industry involved as well in terms of Wiggins Island that have made this happen
"Its been a vision for a lot of years when you consider this originally began with the port access road, taking the heavy trucks off Flinders Parade and here we have this amazing facility.
"It a vision that happened many many years ago and the port, with all their industry partners, put the money in and have given this back to our community, I could not be happier."
Cr Burnett said the vision for East Shores began when Peter Corones, now GPC chair, was Gladstone City Mayor.
"They were charged to take the trucks off Flinders Parade and put this back so we could give it back to the community," he said.
"Here we are now seeing Flinders Parade developing and I'm proud to be one of the councillors who voted with Peter Corones to make this happen.
"The port are one of the best corporate citizens anyone could ask for and when you look at the Marina and Spinnaker Park, and now here, what they have given back to the community is just unreal.
"Everyone loves East Shores, you go down there for the family barbecue and check it out.
"When that cruise terminal opens again and we get cruise ships in town it's just going to be great for our local economy."