A Port Macquarie fishermen’s wharf project will feature a boardwalk, public wharf, unloading jetty and moorings thanks to a $2.8 million state government investment.
NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian joined Port Macquarie MP Leslie Williams at the site of the former Hastings River Fishermen's Co-op on October 23 for the funding announcement.
The foreshore project will involve the construction of a boardwalk, public wharf, unloading jetty and moorings on the Hastings River near Kooloonbung Creek.
Commercial fishermen will be able to unload their catch and sell it directly to restaurants.
Ms Berejiklian said the project would support recreational and commercial fishermen, and be a boost to the community and tourism.
“Hopefully this will be a huge boost for the community in so many ways - in bringing fresh product to market, but also in having people enjoy their time as recreational fishermen, but also in terms of tourism, it will be an extra boost and increase the offerings that Port Macquarie makes to the whole of NSW,” she said.
The Premier said she appreciated when the government made this type of investment, there would be other incentives for private investors to come in off the back of it.
Concept plans are in place and the state government is looking forward to the next stage of consultation.
Port Macquarie MP Leslie Williams said the state government was going to work very closely with Port Macquarie-Hastings Council as the trust managers, commercial fishermen and the community to make sure it got the redevelopment right.
“We all know that we love our coastline, we love those opportunities to walk along this beautiful space, but if you look along here you can certainly see it does need a revitalisation, it does need a bit of a facelift, and it’s really exciting that the state government has been able to come on board to make that investment in our local community,” Mrs Williams said.
She said the ability for commercial fishermen to unload their catch and sell it directly to the restaurants benefited the economy and great businesses.
“We are talking about a significant boardwalk, a public wharf, more moorings for vessels and also a place where commercial fishers can unload,” Mrs Williams said about the project.
Commercial fisherman Steve Burt said he was happy about the redevelopment.
“It will certainly make our life a lot easier from a safety point of view for our workers and myself,” he said.
“It will make it a lot more visible and acceptable to the local people and the tourists that come to Port Macquarie, they will be able to see how we work, what we do, understand what we do and how we do it.”
Mr Burt said he enjoyed showing people what commercial fishermen did.
“That creates a lot nicer atmosphere between the general public and the commercial fishing sector,” he said.
It is hoped work will start on the site in March 2018.