Council invests in environmental education

Redland City will be home to a first-class native botanical garden and environmental education centre after Council today approved a master plan to expand its IndigiScapes Centre at Capalaba.

Redland City Deputy Mayor Wendy Boglary said today’s decision would see the local award winning environmental facility transformed over the next five years.

“This already popular venue will be extended to include environmental and cultural experiences that will make it one of South East Queensland’s leading environmental education centres,” she said.

“Included in the extension will be an elevated skywalk through the trees, ending at the 400-year-old Tallowood tree, celebrating the tree’s longevity and place in local history.

“Set in the natural surrounds of Capalaba, children will have the opportunity to not only see nature, but also play in it, thanks to a new sensory playground to be built as part of this project.

“Visitors will be able to enjoy some great freshly cooked food at an expanded cafe, while an updated visitor centre will provide tourists with all the information they need to enjoy their time in the Redlands.

The proposed expansion of the Redlands Indigiscapes Centre.

The proposed expansion of the Redlands Indigiscapes Centre.

Cr Boglary said the extension would include a strong emphasis on cultural education and tourism opportunities.

“The city’s Traditional Owners the Quandamooka People will play an important part in the new centre, including a Welcome to Country picnic area that offers a space for traditional dance, entertainment and talks,” she said.

“Council is also currently in discussion with the Quandamooka Yoolooburrabee Aboriginal Corporation (QYAC) for authentic indigenous cultural heritage experiences to be held at IndigiScapes.”

QYAC CEO Cameron Costello said the project provided an opportunity for the Redlands to expand its cultural tourism offering.

“QYAC is very excited to share Quandamooka culture with visitors and through a solid partnership with Indigiscapes we will bring a unique ecocultural experience to the Redlands.”

Redland City Councillor for Division 7 Murray Elliott said a consultant’s report predicted the extension could attract an extra 8,364 of visitors a year to the centre by 2022 and support 15 direct jobs and five part-time indigenous jobs.

“IndigiScapes is already very popular with locals and visitors and this investment is predicted to generate an extra $1.2million in regional expenditure, boosting the city’s economic opportunities,” he said.

“The extension will be staged over a number of years starting with a new and expanded native plant nursery that will sell a variety of locally sourced plants to help green the Redlands.

“This project will complement the Horizons Foundation $7 million community centre being built next door; creating a vibrant and attractive venue for local families and visitors.”

Council will investigate private and public funding options to help fund the project.