A vital link between North Stradbroke Island in Moreton Bay and Brisbane’s CBD will be open before Christmas, Queensland Tourism Minister Kate Jones says.
“Before the end of year, Queenslanders and Brisbane residents will be able to come down to Howard Smith Wharves, which will be the gateway to Moreton Bay,” she said.
Ms Jones said $5.5 million had been provided for the construction of three pontoons at Howard Smith Wharves, accommodating a ferry service to the island.
“This is something that the tourism industry has spoken about for years. Through our growing infrastructure fund, we are proud to deliver this link from the heart of Brisbane to the Moreton Bay,” Ms Jones said.
She said the pontoon would make day trips to the Moreton Bay island much easier, cutting out the need to travel to Cleveland and Redland Bay.
She said more than 6,000 people would be able to use services to access North Stradbroke Island.
The trip to North Stradbroke Island from Brisbane’s CBD currently takes about two hours.
It requires a 60 kilometre drive to Cleveland and a 30 minute ferry from Toondah Harbour to Dunwich on the island.
By public transport, from Roma Street Station, the trip takes two and half hours and includes travel by train, bus and ferry.
Member for McConnel Grace Grace said the new plan would mean the trip to Stradbroke Island would take only 40 minutes.
“From this heart of Brisbane’s city, thousands of my constituents can come down to the pontoon, get on a ferry and be in Moreton Bay on the beautiful Stradbroke Island that everyone in my electorate absolutely loves,” she said.
“This is a game changer. There are so many people right behind me in these apartments who will benefit from having their own pontoon right next door to them where they can hop on a catamaran, on a ferry and be on Straddie in 40 minutes.”
Ms Jones said negotiations are underway to get the boats operating by Christmas.