Sunday, November 17, 2013
It STARTED with a drawing on the back of an envelope, and now the Ettalong Beach Foreshore upgrade is almost finished, with an official opening planned for early next year.
Peninsula Chamber of Commerce Mainstreet Co-ordinator Debra Wales said Gosford Council and Scape Constructions had hosted a sneak peak tour of the construction works last week.
“We have been highly impressed with both the progress and the standard of work as the project nears completion,” Ms Wales said.
“The Plan of Management was initiated by the Peninsula Chamber of Commerce under their Mainstreet Program in 1998 with the early stages of planning funded under Gosford Council’s Financial Strategy after the Ettalong Beach town centre revitalisation had been completed.”
Ms Wales said that the beachfront and reserve had degraded so badly over the years that very few people were using it at that time.
“It had become a haven for anti-social behaviour and was unsafe for young families to visit,” she said
“At the time, the business community were very focused on doing something to protect the beauty of Ettalong Beach and bring back families to our waterfront.
“Since that first meeting with Council’s senior engineering officer Mike Alsop in the mid 1990s, where we drew the initial plan of the Ettalong Beach upgrade on the back of an envelope, we were determined to see it come to fruition.
“We and the community have been rewarded with new foreshore facilities that we can sit back and enjoy into the future”.
Gosford Council adopted the Plan of Management in 2007.
The first stage commenced in 2008 with the removal of the unwanted toilet block at Picnic Parade followed by the construction of the three viewing decks which were completed with Federal Government funding.
In 2010, then-Robertson Federal Labor MP Deborah O’Neill committed $2m of federal fundsto complete the upgrade but the work did not commence until new Gosford Council general manager Paul Anderson put the process into action.