Time to zip at Sunshine Coast national park
VISITORS to a popular Sunshine Coast national park are set to reach lofty new heights with the Queensland Government opening an Expressions of Interest process for a zipline canopy tour.
Tourism Minister Jann Stuckey and National Parks Minister Steve Dickson said Kondalilla National Park could soon be home to a new ecotourism experience, as the Newman Government continued to grow Queensland's four pillar economy.
Ms Stuckey said the initiative was part of the LNP's commitment to the future success of nature-based tourism through ecologically responsible partnerships with the private sector.
"Opening up national parks and protected areas will encourage visitors to stay longer in our regions and ultimately help us achieve our goal of doubling overnight visitor expenditure to $30 billion by 2020," Ms Stuckey said.
"The first stage in the Obi Obi EOI process is to consider the concepts for the site and ensure the proponents are able to finance and operate the site responsibly. Shortlisted proponents will then submit more detailed proposals.
"We are committed to ensuring our natural areas are managed in a sustainable way so they will remain an asset for future generations of locals and tourists alike.
"The zipline project will let operators contribute to our vision of making Queensland a world leader in ecotourism by 2020 and I encourage proponents to submit innovative concepts which will showcase this unique region."
Ms Stuckey said the Government had worked closely with the site's Traditional Owners the Jinibara People as well as the wider Sunshine Coast community to ensure the project would maximise environmental, social and cultural benefits.
"Queensland is blessed with some of the world's most stunning national parks and protected areas, and we want to share these with the world by making them more accessible," Mr Dickson said.
"The Obi Obi Gorge in Kondalilla National Park provides a unique opportunity to showcase the region's pristine natural environment to all Queenslanders and visitors. Ziplines and canopy walks are a popular drawcard for nature-based tourism throughout the world and we want to capitalise on that."
Detailed information for ecotourism operators is available at
www.nprsr.qld.gov.au/tourism/ecotourism/investments.html and submissions are due by 4.00pm (EST) on Friday, 28 February 2014.