AN ESTIMATED 4000 Gold Coasters have turned out in force to defend their beaches from development at both ends of the coast.
At Kirra, the community was outraged at proposals from Leda Developments to build first a cruise terminal and then a casino resort development on Kirra beachfront.
While in the Broadwater, the community has been opposing development on Wavebreak Island and The Spit for the last two years.
ARTICLE CONTINUES AFTER THIS ADVERTISEMENT
The push is now on to have all beaches and foreshores from South Stradbroke Island to Coolangatta declared a World Surfing Reserves which would provide protection from developers seeking to grab public land for their benefit.
The community massed at North Kirra beach from 10am on Sunday, where they were welcomed to country by the local Yugumbeh people, to demonstrate their conviction that Gold Coast beaches and foreshores belong to all Australians and are not “for sale” to developers for their commercial benefit.
Following the speeches, all present marched down the beach and formed the letters WSR which represented World Surfing Reserve.
Lois Levy, Campaign Coordinator of Gecko-Gold Coast and Hinterland Environment Council (Gecko) said “Speaker after speaker today made it plain that the community will not accept commercial development of our beaches or the Broadwater.”
“The Premier responded positively last Thursday that his Government would not allow development at Kirra beach and we now call upon him to make a similar announcement ending speculation about development on Wavebreak Island and The Spit,” he said.
Local Member and Minister for Tourism Jan Stuckey reiterated the Premiers statement made last Thursday that ‘no cruise terminal would be built on Gold Coast beaches’.
Councillor Chris Robbins was also fully supportive of the motion as were the leaders of Save Our Southern Beaches Alliance, Save Our Spit Alliance, Surfrider Foundation, Wildlife Preservation Society, Yeskandoo, and Kirra Surf Life Saving Club.
A resolution was passed calling on the Government to protect Gold Coast beaches and the Broadwater from commercial development on public open space.
“That this assembly of people here today calls upon the Premier of Queensland to reject all applications for private commercial development on Gold Coast public open space of beaches and the Broadwater, including, but not limited to integrated resorts, a casino, and a cruise terminal , and protects these community assets for the people of Australia with appropriate legislation.” – Lois Levy, Campaign Coordinator, Gecko Gold Coast & Hinterland Environment Council Association Inc. Seconded: Phil Hoile, Save Our Spit Alliance.
The motion will be sent to the Premier today and the community awaits his response.