A PROJECT manager will be appointed to develop a detailed plan for the $4.5 million Port Macquarie tidal pool.
The first progress payments have been received by the Port Macquarie Tidal Pool Committee as one of the first major milestones in the project's development is reached.
A tidal pool will be built at Oxley Beach and was made possible with a $4.5 million Federal Government grant announced by Prime Minister Scott Morrison during a visit to the region in 2019.
The prime minister pledged his government would finish the feasibility study, finalise planning and design, and build the project.
"It will mean the council and local population won't have to put up a dollar," the PM said when making the re-election promise.
The grant was promised despite Port Macquarie-Hastings councillors voting in May 2018 to place on the record that a tidal pool is not a priority for council.
A feasibility study for the project was unveiled in July 2020 naming Oxley Beach as the preferred site for the tidal pool.
The preferred site will be anchored to Flagstaff headland and will include "a defensive sea wall providing protection from the prevailing swell".
Along with associated amenities, the pool will feature eight swimming lanes each 50 metres in length, a children's leisure zone and a rehabilitation zone with disabled access.
Architect Nicole Larkin and engineer James Carley from the University of NSW were involved in preparing the feasibility study.
The state government tipped in $50,000 for the study.
Port Macquarie Tidal Pool Committee spokesperson Kathryn Butler said the project manager will prepare and deliver a detailed implementation plan within the next four weeks.
"We appreciate the ongoing support of mayor Peta Pinson, Leslie Williams MP and Pat Conaghan MP," she said.
"It's great to see all levels of government working together towards this valuable asset for the community of Port Macquarie and tourism."