Seafront Oval safe after council votes to move playground
A CONTROVERSIAL playground marked for construction on Seafront Oval will find a new home on the Esplanade, after councillors voted to change the project's initially proposed location.
The Pialba adventure playground, which will involve the construction of 'skytowers' almost 7m high, slides and a climbing net, will now be built near the all-abilities playground carpark after yesterday's decision.
It was originally earmarked for construction on the oval as part of the Esplanade master plan.
Infrastructure councillor Denis Chapman said the oval could lose up to 30% of its land size if the initial plan went ahead.
It was met with outcry from community groups like Relay for Life and Hervey Bay Rotary, who feared they would not be able to host future events on the oval.
He claimed the community was not told of the specific location of the playground when community consultation of the program was first undertaken in 2015.
Fraser Coast councillors voted 6-5 to change the location, with councillors Stuart Taylor, Darren Everard, Daniel Sanderson, Paul Truscott and David Lewis voting against the motion.
Cr Chapman called the resolution "a great day for the community".
"They had their say, and I had the opportunity to go back to the council and show them the process wasn't done correctly," Cr Chapman said.
"This was going to be a big surprise to everyone, losing areas of the Seafront Oval."
But it struck a different note among his colleagues, with Cr Everard saying the resolution was "disappointing".
"I've been approached by families who thought it (the oval location) was a great idea," he said.
"All these stop-and-starts on approved projects cost money. They cost the ratepayers money."