Plans to transform a large parcel of cleared land into a recreational rainforest utopia in one of the Coast’s five ‘major green spaces’ in the hinterland have been revealed.
The Sunshine Coast Council is calling on the community to help shape its ambitious vision to create a ‘new kind of park’ by regenerating cleared grazing land back into original lush rainforest.
The release of the draft master plan for the proposed Sunshine Coast Ecological Park reveals plans for two treetop bridges and a forest lookout with 360-degree views over the Glass House Mountains and down to the coast.
The 65ha land parcel lies in Jinibara country, adjacent to the existing Mary Cairncross Scenic Reserve at Maleny and within the Mountain View Green Space, which is one of the Sunshine Coast’s five major green spaces.
The plan also features a community pavilion, operations and research facility and “forest rooms” for play, discovery, rest and contemplation.
The plan aims to create a place where humans and nature co-habitate, with ecosystems thriving alongside spaces for the community and visitors to experience ecological restoration through education, play spaces and nature-based recreation.
Environment and Liveability Portfolio Councillor Peter Cox said the draft master plan would be open to community feedback on council’s Have Your Say website until March 20.
“This proposal will provide a unique park for the whole community,” Cr Cox said.
“In this third round of community consultation for the proposed park, residents and visitors can help council determine whether this plan will meet our growing community’s needs and aspirations.”
Sunshine Coast Council Mayor Mark Jamieson said the proposed project would restore pre-colonisation rainforests and wetlands, but it would take decades for ecosystem function to recover and flourish.
“In 30 years and beyond, council wants our next generations to benefit from the decisions we make today,” Cr Jamieson said.
“Over time, we’ll have the privilege of watching the ecosystems in this park recover as species return to the restored forest and wetland.”
With the Sunshine Coast officially recognised as a UNESCO Biosphere, Cr Jamieson said council remained committed to major projects such as the new park.
“My hope is the community will embrace this park as their own as a place to immerse in nature, connect with each other and be inspired to continue our sustainability journey,” he said.
The Sunshine Coast Ecological Park is a key part of the Environment and Liveability Strategy, which aims to deliver a healthy and liveable Sunshine Coast to 2041 and beyond.
The draft master plan was developed with input from an advisory panel, community reference group, and an engagement-led design approach that invited the community to help shape the park’s mix of recreation, green space and ecological conservation.
Article source: Queensland Property Investor
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