Works contributing to safe and navigable access to the South Wave Break Island channel in the Broadwater will start today.
Gold Coast Waterways Authority CEO, Hal Morris, has confirmed a local dredging contractor will start setting up on site and will commence dredging on 25 November, with work expected to wrap up in time for the holiday season.
‘The South Wave Break Island channel, also known as the Grand Channel, is a key connection for people travelling between the eastern and western areas of the Broadwater to access the waterways network.
‘Maintaining ongoing access to our waterways is vital for the marine, tourism and recreation industries.
‘Our waterways support 6,000 direct and indirect jobs and contribute $770 million directly and indirectly to our local economy every year.
‘That’s why we’re investing $532,000 to keep this channel safe and accessible for waterways users.’
Mr Morris said routine surveys had shown significant shoaling has occurred in the channel, reducing available depths to less than one metre below Lowest Astronomical Tide (LAT) in some areas.
Almost 22,000 cubic metres of clean sand will be removed from the channel during the dredging campaign.
Mr Morris said several adjustments would be made to the way dredging is undertaken to address concerns raised by tourism operators who regularly use the waters around Wave Break Island for diving, snorkelling and kayaking.
The changes include commencing placement of dredged material at a southerly point along the beach to minimise impacts on water clarity at the northern end of the beach, regular water quality monitoring and testing and marine fauna and seagrass monitoring to protect local environmental values on a longer-term basis.
The dredging works are part of the Gold Coast Waterways Authority’s $27.6 million Waterways Management Program.