MP's grand plan for Mackay, Whitsunday's tourist market

Whitsuday MP Jason Costigan is proposing a tourist drive that takes in Kinchant, Teemburra, Eungella and Peter Faust dams and the proposed Urannah dam.
Whitsuday MP Jason Costigan is proposing a tourist drive that takes in Kinchant, Teemburra, Eungella and Peter Faust dams and the proposed Urannah dam.

MP Jason Costigan wants to create a tourist experience with a difference in the Mackay-Whitsunday hinterland - a tourist drive linking the region's dams.

The outspoken LNP Member for Whitsunday has been pushing for the development of his pet project -the Urannah Dam - for some time, but to complement the controversial proposal, he now wants to link Urannah via roads to Kinchant, Teemburra, Eungella and Peter Faust dams.

"A tourist drive that takes in Kinchant, Teemburra, Eungella, Urannah and Peter Faust dams would be a game changer for tourism in our regional communities out west," Mr Costigan said.

"It will be great for the Mackay and Whitsunday region as well as the small places like the Pioneer Valley and Eungella and I believe the tourism potential of linking those dams should not be underestimated.

"At the moment people drive to the Eungella Dam and turn back, but there is a real opportunity to link Eungella to the proposed Uranahh dam and then on to the Peter Faust Dam and so on.

"You are not going to have a Urannah Dam without a road, but there are more and more people with a sense of adventure and they want to get off the beaten track, so I believe it would be a viable tourism option."


Eungella Dam is a popular destination for boating and fishing in the Mackay region. Photo: Peter Douglas
Eungella Dam is a popular destination for boating and fishing in the Mackay region. Photo: Peter Douglas Contributed

Member for Mackay Julieanne Gilbert said the concept of linking the dams was a good idea but the terrain and the flora and fauna in the region (which includes state forests and national parks) made it a prohibitive proposal.

"What would be better for tourism is to ensure we have good quality facilities so we can attract the grey nomads, campers and fishers," Mrs Gilbert said.

"There needs to be more thought put into the idea and the cost of upgrading or building roads between those sites is just going to be nearly impossible because they will go through sensitive flora and fauna and we don't want to destroy those areas just to put a road through."

In response to the Labor MP's opposition to the proposal, Mr Costigan said Mrs Gilbert needed to think about her constituents rather than the flora and fauna.

"It's amazing that Mrs Gilbert's first concern is the flora and fauna and not of human beings," he said.

"Julianne Gilbert has to get into her head that her constituents and mine are suffering and they need jobs and economic development and I believe we can get the balance right between development and the environment," he said.


Peter Faust Dam is well known for its natural beauty. Photo: Karen Deller
Peter Faust Dam is well known for its natural beauty. Photo: Karen Deller

Mackay Tourism manager Tas Webber said the local tourism industry was very keen to support and build on fishing-related tourism in the region, and as such, is working closely with Mackay Regional Council to develop a fishing strategy.

"The fishing strategy will include marketing collateral and self-drive trails, which we will promote to visitors," Mr Webber said.

"We also had the Australia Fishing Championship here last year filming at Eungella Dam, so the word is certainly getting out about our prime fishing locations."

Mackay Tourism promotes two major tourist drives - the Pacific Coast Way, which incorporates Sarina to Mackay (a detour to Eungella and Finch Hatton) and the wallabies and kangaroos at Cape Hillsborough, and the Mining Trail, from Mackay to Clermont.

Topics:  dams eungella jason costigan julieanne gilbert kinchant mackay peter faust teemburra tourism urannah whitsunday

Bridge component work on Hwy upgrade a local economy boost

Contracts have been awarded to build components for more than 100 Woolgoolga to Ballina Pacific Hwy upgrade bridges.

Contracts awarded to build components for more than 100 bridges.

AFL no longer just a game for the boys

The Coffs Breakers have had good numbers to pre-season training for the upcoming AFL North Coast youth girls competition.

Inaugural Youth Girls comp in the AFL North Coast about to start.

Swimmers pulled out of notorious rip

Three swimmers have been pulled from a rip with two requiring treatment by paramedics.

Reports group of swimmers in trouble at North Wall Beach.

Local Partners

Two-legged circus Lions say thank you to the community

After the curtains are drawn on the four-legged lions at Stardust Circus, it's the two-legged lions' time to shine.

What's happening on the Coffs Coast this weekend

Harmony Day will be held at the Botanic Garden on Sunday.

Things to do on the Coffs Coast this weekend?

CMC Rocks is just the ticket for Eric Paslay

HAPPY TO BE HERE: American country singer Eric Paslay will play CMC Rocks 2017.

Country music singer is touring overseas for the first time.

Daredevils of Nitro Circus to thrill Lismore

Oakes Oval in Lismore will host the sell-out, worldwide phenomenon that is Nitro Circus Live during its 15-city Australian tour in April.

The (in)famous 55-foot high Nitro Giganta ramp is the centrepiece

Family Feud host Grant Denyer in hospital after rally crash

GOLD Logie nominee Grant Denyer has survived a horror rally car crash today, which has seen the Family Feud host and his co-driver airlifted to hospital.

Would you like 90 weeks of paid parental leave?

“It’s changed the culture,” say the Latte Papas of Sweden’s generous parental leave provisions.

Why not move to Sweden: the world’s best place to be a dad

Only one woman nominated for the Gold Logie

Love Child and The Wrong Girl star Jessica Marais is nominated for a Gold Logie this year.

Jessica Marais is about to star in a new Logies controversy

Our Caitlyn a No.1 hit at CMC Music Awards

RISING STAR: Caitlyn Shadbolt at the CMC Music Awards on the Gold Coast.

Caitlyn Shadbolt enjoys one of the most exciting weeks of her career

Steve ventures into the wild unknown on epic mission

Steve Backshall pictured along the Baliem River in a scene from Extreme River Challenge.

Wildlife presenter Steve Backshall tackles wild river challenge.

TV Insider: MKR has lost its recipe for success

My Kitchen Rules judges Colin Fassnidge and Pete Evans with guest judge Curtis Stone, right.

MKR needs a shake (up) of more than just the sauce bottle.

Travis Collins, Keith Urban win big at CMC Music Awards

Country music singer Travis Collins.

LEE Kernaghan also inducted into CMC Hall of Fame.

Strong demand for houses and units on Coffs Coast

GOLDEN GLOW: This is one of the joys of living on the Coffs Coast, the sun rises past the Jetty at Coffs Harbour.

Sellers have the upper hand as desperate buyers snap up homes

Statement in style and luxury

LUXURY LIVING: This North Sapphire home has come with a long list of high-end inclusions.

SNEAK PEEK: The Real Estate Property Guide is online now.

City sale signifies a bright future for CBD

The Boulevard Arcade has sold in Coffs Harbour for just over $4 million.

Multi-million dollar sale brings plans to future development

It's official: Byron Bay unaffordable

MILLIONAIRES ROW: The Housing Commission house in Keats St, Byron Bay which sold at auction on Saturday for $1.65 million.

Buying a home in Bay Bay is a dream too far for some

Coast home luring interstate buyers sold

PRIZED POSITION: Blue clip location, peaceful surroundings, spacious living with swimming pool, tennis court on 4562sq

The property was described as a 'Queenslander with Hamptons style'

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!