An exciting day for the Gold Coast, with parts of the world’s first floating reef being lowered into the ocean off Main Beach.
The largest floating crane in Australia is being used to install nine ‘sculptural reef flutes’ at the bottom of the dive site, which is being installed at a depth of 30 metres about 2.5km off Main Beach.
The offshore attraction, dubbed ‘Wonder Reef’, is hoping to be up and running by early 2022 after undergoing up to eight months of monitoring and testing.
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Gold Coast Mayor Tom Tate said the $5 million project would lead a much-needed tourism revival for the city.
“Wonder Reef will attract 160,000 new visitors to our city, injecting $32 million into our local economy within its first 10 years of operation,” the Mayor said.
“That’s the tonic we need right now with the challenges of Covid.
“New tourism products mean more people staying, dining, shopping and exploring the coast.
“I strongly encourage any dive enthusiasts to ensure their licences are up to date for when the attraction opens in 2022.”
The Mayor said the city will soon partner with marine experts on coral planting of local species to accelerate marine growth.
“Once the reef structures are established, they will create more than 32,000m3 of new reef habitat,” he said.
Wonder Reef has already provided 18 jobs during construction and is expected to support up to 80 ongoing operational jobs for locals once operational.