Gold Coast Mayoral candidate, Keith Douglas started the ball rolling in 2007 by lobbying hard for artificial reefs in the Gold Coast. Now his push for new reefs has become intertwined with his plans to improve diving and surfing amenities.
Keith Douglas on the water
As the population of the city continues to expand by the thousands, an increasing number of new-to-the-sport surfers are taking to the waves. They’ve read about D-bah, the Groyne and the Alley and have no idea why local surfers are getting hot under the collar.
'Things have become too competitive out there and the last thing a surfer wants is to wait for an hour in the line-up, only to have a newbie cut in on his wave,' said Douglas.
The surfing industry contributes $3.3 billion annually to the local economy, but if the Gold Coast wants to retain its crown as a Surfer’s Paradise, then it needs to develop new breaks, new industry opportunities and relive some of the pressure on the most in-demand sites.
'South Straddie has some fantastic breaks, but getting there can be a challenge. That’s part of the allure though, as it’s not the kind of site where tourists and new residents are going to try their hand at the sport.'
With Tipplers currently in a state of disrepair, Douglas believes that opportunity exists to create a bush surf camp on the island. This would be enhanced by new indigenous experiences, recreational fishing facilities and low-impact amenities for the boating community.