Pulse eNewsletter – December 2013

Mayor’s message

As we enter the festive season, Redlanders can celebrate a very productive year for the City and look forward to exciting times in a prosperous New Year.

This year, Redland City Council has set the scene for much-needed job-creating opportunities which will take shape next year. These in turn will shape the future of our City, which I believe truly is the best place to work, live, relax and do business.

Key among these achievements is the progress we have made with the priority development area projects at Cleveland’s Toondah Harbour and Redland Bay’s Weinham Creek marine precincts.
These projects rank among the most exciting and important in the history of the Redlands and will enhance our reputation as a destination in our own right for domestic and overseas visitors. I am also convinced they will be the catalysts for further investment in our city.

Most importantly, they will prove vital transport hubs to the jewels of Moreton Bay, as well as becoming opportunities for enticing dining, entertainment and commercial precincts.

Redlanders will get more opportunities to have their say on these projects as they progress but the early vision for Toondah Harbour is to turn a basic ferry terminal into a dynamic precinct attractive to tourists as well as being a transport, retail and entertainment hub for locals. This could include a mix of marine activities, parks, boardwalks and cycling paths, apartments, restaurants, shops and a hotel.

Weinam Creek offers potential to be transformed into a waterfront recreation precinct that does justice to its role as the gateway to the beautiful Southern Moreton Bay Islands.

Both mark a coming of age for the Redlands and will significantly accelerate local jobs growth and the revitalisation of the Cleveland CBD, which already is showing early signs of renewed confidence.

The PDAs have drawn substantial interest from Australian and Asian investors, with a recent trade mission to China, Taiwan and Japan generating positive results, including visits to the Redlands by five Asian delegations.

There also has been keen interest in eco tourism ventures which harness our wonderful bush environment.

All this adds up to a boost in both the Redlands’ tourism and business credentials.
This is not about changing the Redlands’ character but enhancing the essence of our beautifully diverse city which values its attractive, village charm.

It is about creating a climate for prosperity – but it is up to business to take advantage of that to create the local jobs this City needs.

Above all, Council is here to deliver for residents and has taken great strides in improving service delivery. This process will continue in the New Year.

To this end, we took on the difficult process of restructuring council operations and returning our budget to surplus while still delivering the lowest headline rates increase in South-East Queensland and one of the biggest road work programs on record in our City.

Council also offset the State-imposed bulk water increase by cutting the cost of Council-controlled waste water by an average $96 a year.

In the wake of last January’s ravaging by ex-tropical cyclone Oswald, we also developed a state-of-the-art disaster management plan which is set to become the blueprint for councils throughout Queensland.

Our approach of ensuring public safety by developing specific disaster plans for each of our communities remains reliant on residents also being prepared for the worst nature can throw at us.
With storm season upon us, I urge all resident to ensure they have disaster plans and emergency kits at the ready. For more information, head to Council’s Disaster Hub by going to www.redland.qld.gov.au, clicking on “About Redlands”, then “Disaster Management”.

The Redlands is a wonderful place to live and we have much to be thankful for.

I invite all Redlanders, their families and friends to celebrate that at our very popular festive season opener, Christmas by Starlight, on Saturday, 7 December.

Festivities will get underway at 3pm in Norm Price Park, Redland Showground, Long Street, Cleveland, with free children’s activities, visit from Santa, food, rides, a children’s stage show at 5.30pm, and a fireworks finale at about 8pm.

The main twilight carols concert kicks off at 6pm and will feature Redland’s own musical theatre star Connor Crawford and a variety of top Redlands’ talent.

Merry Christmas to all and best wishes.


Your say

Toondah Harbour and Weinam Creek are on the brink of an exciting period of transformation.
From mid January you will be invited to have your say on the proposed development schemes for both priority development areas.

The plans will be based on ideas from the community, technical studies as well as feedback and interest from potential investors.

The development schemes for both sites will be finalised by June next year. Visit www.redland.qld.gov.au for more information.


State of the art

The Australian Emergency Management Institute has given a big wrap to the Redlands’ disaster management plan.

Parts 1 and 2 of the plan have been included as a best practice planning tool in the institute’s national emergency planning course. Parts 3 and 4 of the plan are due for completion in March next year.

The disaster management plan is not only a first for the Redlands but for Queensland and is expected to become the blueprint for local management of potential disasters, such as bushfires and severe weather events.

When finalised, it will include specialised plans for all communities within the Redlands.
Find out more by logging on to Redland City Council’s Disaster Hub by going to www.redland.qld.gov.au, clicking on “About Redlands”, then “Disaster Management”.

Heart starters

Redland City Council is looking at potential development options for land it owns in Cleveland’s city heart as part of its mission to revitalise the CBD.

The options were included in a preliminary report tabled at the November 20 Council meeting.
Redland City Mayor Karen Williams said the possibilities included development of the existing Council administration site, as well as near-by land.

“The options presented have the potential to deliver millions of dollars in cost savings to Council, which in turn would deliver considerable benefits for ratepayers,’’ Cr Williams said.

“The aim is to identify opportunities to support investment and business within the CBD as part of our vision of breathing new life into central Cleveland.”

CBD activation spokesman Cr Craig Ogilvie said there were no commitments to any of the options presented by the consultants.

“What it does is provide some food for thought and allow Council to investigate potential investors who could facilitate the options in the future,” Cr Ogilvie said.

“Options include construction of a new building on Council-owned land with a variety of scenarios, including residential and commercial use within the new building.

“All options present benefits for the community including improved commercial and residential opportunities.”


Diary date

Help celebrate the centenary and colourful history of Dunwich’s popular community hall on Tuesday 10 December.

The special event, which will kick off at 10am, will feature an exhibition presented by North Stradbroke Island Historical Museum, including a talk and historical slideshow on the hall presented by former Queensland Heritage Council member Howard Guille.

Redland City Mayor Karen Williams said it was fitting that the community should gather to mark the 100th anniversary of such a significant Redlands landmark.

“Dunwich Public Hall is listed on the Queensland, Redland City and National Trust’s heritage registers and boasts a very colourful history as well as continuing to play a vital community role,’’ Cr Williams said.

“The building was once the men’s mess hall at the former Benevolent Asylum on Stradbroke Island, which cared for the aged, infirm and destitute from 1865 until the 1940s.

“Most of the buildings associated with the asylum were relocated or demolished when the facility closed in 1947 but the current building has remained remarkably intact. Now, in its 100th year, it continues to be used as a hall to serve the community.’’

Division 2 Councillor for Cleveland and Stradbroke Island Cr Craig Ogilvie extended an open invitation to the event.

“Everyone is welcome to bring their photos and memories of the hall to share and join with us for morning tea,’’ Cr Ogilvie said.

“The hall is quite a treasure, telling a great story of how European and Aboriginal heritage came together.

“It’s big enough for 150 people, making this lovely old brick and timber building an important gathering place for social and cultural events and meetings – and what better event than its centenary.”

For more information, contact North Stradbroke Island Historical Museum on 3409 9699.


Award for excellence

IndigiScapes’ Bush Tucker Experience has added a major State tourism award to its bulging trophy cabinet.

The Redlands’ award-winning natural attraction at Capalaba was honoured for Excellence in Food Tourism at the prestigious Queensland Tourism Awards at Brisbane’s Royal International Convention Centre.

It is yet another boost for the growing tourism credentials of the Redlands, with three other local enterprises – Mt Cotton Guesthouse, Stradbroke Island Events and Redlands Kayak Tours – also represented at the awards.

The popular environmental centre has developed into a “one-stop shop’’ for all things environmental in the Redlands, which prides itself on its natural environment.

It follows its win in the same category at the recent regional awards for the bush-themed cuisine at its Tea Garden Café. Last year, the Redland City Council-owned IndigiScapes also won the regional Eco Tourism category.

IndigiScapes has become extremely popular for its bush tucker-themed teas and lunches in its beautiful natural bush setting.

Visitors can sample locally sourced foods to see what the Redlands has to offer, stroll along walking trails through native botanic gardens, home to a 400-year-old tallowwood tree, and spot local animals, birds and reptiles.

You also can join a guided bush foods tour and learn about the wisdom of the local Indigenous people.

Bookings and info: IndigiScapes is open every day – centre and gardens 10am–4pm, cafe 10am–3pm (it pays to book early), tracks open dawn to dusk. Book at 3824 8611 or email indigiscapes@redland.qld.gov.au.


Focus on art

December brings a special arts treat for the Redlands, with the launch of In Focus 2013 at the Cleveland and Capalaba galleries.

The event coincides with the key exhibition My Island: Textile designs by Oodgeroo Noonuccal and highlights the Redlands’ status as a vibrant regional cultural centre.

The Redland Yurara Art Society, Coochie Art Group, Hilary Wakeling Art Group, Macleay Island Arts Complex, Russell Island Community Arts and The Old School House Gallery will be represented in this collective look at the Redlands’ thriving arts world.

Redland City Council Arts, Culture and Innovation spokesman Cr Paul Bishop said In Focus 2013 would be presented simultaneously at both galleries.

“It celebrates the wealth of artists living and working in the Redlands and the important role art groups play in the cultural life of the region,’’ Cr Bishop said.

“It also brings together diverse art groups, facilitating networking and collaboration between members across a range of media.

“Community connections are a vital part of creative arts events like this and it demonstrates our historic, present and future depth of talent is growing each day.‘’

In Focus 2013 opens at the Redland Art Gallery, Capalaba, on Monday 9 December and at the Cleveland gallery on Sunday 15 December.

My Island will go on show at the Cleveland gallery on December 15, with an opening by Mayor Karen Williams at 6pm on Friday 13 December.

The opening event will include a “welcome to country” by Aunty Joan Hendriks and a performance by Oodgeroo’s great grand-daughter Kaleenah Edwards. RSVP by calling (07) 3030 4163 or emailing gallery@redland.qld.gov.au by Thursday 12 December.

There will be floor talks and morning tea with artists from 11.30am on Sunday 15 December at Redland Art Gallery, Cleveland, for both exhibitions.


On track

The Redlands Regional Track Park has been given a big boost thanks to a land grant by the State Department of Natural Resources and Mines.

The 4.59 hectares adjoining the Scribbly Gums Conservation Area at Alexandra Hills will allow the cycling and walking trails which will form Redlands Regional Track Park to be extended and enhanced.

Council’s Open Space, Sport and Recreation spokesman Cr Lance Hewlett thanked the State Government for providing an excellent opportunity to develop what will become another valuable community green space.

Development of the track park concept was supported by Redland City Council last year.

“Consolidation of this land into Council’s existing conservation area will allow for the planned extension of nature-based activities,’’ Cr Hewlett said.

“It will boost the Redlands’ outdoors recreational experience and further enhance our relaxed and eco-friendly lifestyle.

“This will become significant as Thornlands’ emerging Kinross community start to use the area.’’

Once fully developed, the track park will cover 256ha and include Scribbly Gums in the north to Teesdale Rd in the southwest and Kinross Road in the south-east.

“Development of trails in the park is now accelerating, along with design of trailheads facilities,’’ Cr Hewlett said.

Posted in eNews and tagged .