Reserve upgrade part of wider vision for seaside village
A locals-led design to enhance Woolgoolga's seaside village charm and attract more visitors to the beach reserve is starting to take shape.
"Woolgoolga has a unique character and history and the goal of the improvements to this popular destination was to reflect and build on the very things that make it so special," Coffs Harbour Mayor Councillor Denise Knight said.
"Many features of the upgrades are also focused on making this spot a welcoming, inclusive place to spend time. It's great to see the works begin on an area that really showcases what makes the town such a popular and beautiful place to live, work and visit."
The Northern Beaches Residents Association (NBRA) is also keen to see the unique character of the seaside town retained but fear a number of proposals currently before Council could put this under threat.
These include a five storey apartment block on the corner of Market and Queen Streets and a 52-unit development on Hastings Street.
The residents group has questioned the delays in adopting the town's Master Plan given it was endorsed back in early 2018.
Playground a focal point of reserve upgrade
Works are about to begin for Stage 1 of the $1.2m Woolgoolga Beach Reserve Upgrade with site fencing and preliminary construction underway.
The project is expected to take four months, weather permitting.
A focal point of the upgrades is a brand new playground featuring inclusive play elements such as an accessible carousel, plus slides, swings, a balance beam and climbing features. There will also be shade sails and fencing on three sides.
The new toilet block will also be accessible and will include a 'Changing Places' facility for people with severe disabilities. A key design feature of the new toilet block will be to highlight local history - specifically the Buster shipwreck - with a roof form and timber features that reference the wreck and the movement of sails on a boat.
The existing amenities and playground will remain open until the new facilities are completed.
New accessible tables, seating and picnic areas are to be installed and the whole area landscaped with an emphasis on open, multi-use lawns under shade trees surrounded by pockets of native vegetation.
New pathways that help connect the beach front with the surrounding business area, and open up the views, are also to be built and will include lighting.
"The aim of the Woolgoolga Beach Reserve is to strike a balance between helping build the local economy and nurturing Woolgoolga's unique charm," said Steve McGrath, Council's General Manager.
"The beach reserve enhancements are an important part of making the town an even more popular destination for visitors and locals."
Key contractors include CRS Creative Recreation Solutions Pty Ltd, along with local firms G2 Architects Pty Ltd, FM Glenn Constructions and the Burnett Group, as well as local subcontractors.
The project is funded by Coffs Harbour City Council and the NSW Government's 'Stronger Country Communities Funding' and 'Everyone Can Play' grant schemes.