A major dredging campaign has been completed in the Coomera River, supporting safe and navigable waterways access for the Gold Coast’s multi-billion-dollar recreation, tourism and marine industries, including superyachts.

The campaign was made possible by the completion earlier this year of the Gold Coast Waterways Authority’s Coomera Dredged Sediment Management Facility.

GCWA CEO Hal Morris said the Facility was purpose-built to manage fine silty sediment which cannot be used for foreshore nourishment or placed offshore.

‘For a long-time, dredging the stretch of the river between the Gold Coast Marine Industry Precinct and Sanctuary Cove had been put in the too-hard basket because there was nowhere to dispose of the sediment in an economic and environmentally friendly way.

‘The completion of this campaign is a major achievement ensuring safe, navigable access for all types of vessels, including Superyachts up to 60 metres in length, supporting the Queensland Government’s Superyacht Strategy.

‘We understand that the marine, tourism and recreation industries depend on access to our waterways and these works are part of our wider investment in their future under our Gold Coast Waterways Management Program.’

An 12 kilometre stretch of the river was dredged between the Gold Coast Marine Industry Precinct and the river’s entrance into the Broadwater at Paradise Point.

The river was dredged to a depth of at least 3 metres below Lowest Astronomical Tide (LAT.)

About 75,000 cubic metres of sediment were removed from the river which is the equivalent of filling Cbus Stadium at Robina with sand to a depth of 15 metres.

Once processed, the sediment from the upper Coomera River is being provided to local companies for re-use, including landscaping golf courses.

The sediment from the lower Coomera River was placed offshore to support the Gold Coast City Council’s beach nourishment program in the wake of Cyclone Oma.

GCWA has been working with the City of Gold Coast, marina operators and managers of residential areas like Sanctuary Cove and Hope Island to help them access the facility so that they can undertake their own dredging works.

Mr Morris said with future maintenance dredging of the Coomera River would be included in the GCWA’s Gold Coast Waterways Management Program which is a rolling 1 plus 3-year investment program.

Under the Program, the next location for dredging is the South Wave Break Island navigation channel in the Broadwater.

GCWA is investing $500,000 in the South Wave Break Island dredging project which is due to start in October and finish in December this year.

Sediment removed from the channel will be used to nourish the eastern foreshore of Wave Break Island.