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Aussie firm hopes to ride wave of success with $187m surf park

MEDIA SOURCE: Real Commercial

The facility could become Central Queensland’s premier outdoor recreational and active tourism hub. 

An “insane” world-first, wave-generating surf pool near the Queensland town of Yeppoon – built in 2018 as a prototype by an Aussie start-up – could be open to the public by late 2022 if a $187 million development plan gets the nod.

Broadbeach-based company Surf Lakes built the eye-popping facility, which generates eight surfable waves every six seconds using a massive “plunger”, as an R&D site, but last month lodged an application with Livingstone Council to develop it as a year-round tourist attraction.

If approved, the company expects the facility to become “Central Queensland’s premier outdoor recreational and active tourism hub” that, once complete in 2031, will bring $17.4 million of ongoing benefits to the local economy and support 229 full-time, ongoing jobs.

In the development stages, it’s predicted to add about $39 million to the local economy and create 349 jobs.

The massive surf park is expected to support 229 full-time, ongoing jobs. 

Surf Lakes’ general manager of global operations and international media and marketing director Wayne Dart said the initial phase would include opening the site to the public with basic camping and “glamping” facilities, as well as pop-up food and beverage sites.

He said the next, $122 million stage would include a skate park, scuba “hole”, overflow lake, junior playground, solar farm and tourist park with 52 cabins and another 60 camp sites.

In the final stage, the company plans to add 100 short-term accommodation beds, a 75-bed boutique hotel and a village green, as well as an inflatable water aqua park and café and restaurant.

“It’s envisaged to be a huge tourist drawcard for the Capricorn Coast and Rockhampton regions,” Mr Dart said.

An economic report submitted with the application explained how the project would increase tourism output in the council area by 15 per cent, grow full-time employment by 20 per cent and grow tourism economy by 14 per cent.

The facility generates eight surfable waves every six seconds using a massive “plunger”. 
Once completed, the surf park is expected to be a major tourist attraction. 

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