Call for interpretive centre renewed

ARMED with a power drill and a steely determination, the owner of The Wheelhouse Bar and Restaurant was in constructive form yesterday.

The dissolution of the Seymour Group's plan to overhaul Hervey Bay marina was not troubling Dom Crea too much.

The number of patrons coming through his business doors during the whale watching season were up, and that was a suitable focus for discussion.

“Our numbers were up, but the dollar spend was down,” he said.

“We had more people coming through but for less dollar value.

“I'm happy with the numbers, they've increased.”

The restaurant's early bird special had brought in the numbers but 100 customers were now spending the equivalent of 50 customers last year.

Mr Crea renewed the call for a Fraser Island interpretive centre to be set up at the marina, while also asking what had come of plans to run ferry transfers to Fraser Island from the harbour.

While acknowledging hairdressing, pharmacy and alternative health businesses now based at the marina, he observed the need for businesses that supported and drove the tourism and catering industry on the waterfront.

He asked what questions Fraser Coast councillors or Hervey Bay MP Ted Sorensen had raised about the failed development.

Mr Sorensen replied by saying he had tried to determine which government department was responsible for the project since his election 18 months ago.

“I have met with representatives from the departments supposedly responsible for this project, but no one seemed to know where this project was going.

“In April, I questioned the Minister for Natural Resources, Mines and Energy, Stephen Robertson, about a starting date for the project, only to be told it was the Minister for Primary Industries, Fisheries and Rural and Regional Queensland, Tim Mulherin's responsibility.

“Considering Mr Robertson's office had previously met with me to discuss the project this was a surprise.

“But when Mr Mulherin directed my inquiries to the Minister for Transport it became clear that no one wants to take responsibility for this Hervey Bay hot potato.”

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