Queensland Government rejects mega resort planned for The Spit

Stu Nettle
Swellnet Dispatch

A proposed $3-billion casino resort development at the northern end of the Gold Coast was today rejected by the Queensland Government. Chinese consortium ASF had planned a five-tower development at the Spit that included a casino, entertainment venues, theatres, hotels and residential apartments.

The ASF development was intended to tie in with a proposed cruise ship terminal that's been championed by Gold Coast Mayor Tom Tate.

While the resport development was rejected, Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said that plans for the cruise ship terminal could continue. Since it was first proposed the location for the terminal has changed many times but the current thinking has it on the ocean side of The Spit.

An artist's impression of the ASF mega casino resort planned for The Spit.

In rejecting the ASF proposal Premier Palaszczuk said the area should be preserved, adding height restrictions would be maintained around the council's current 3-storey limit. One of the towers in the ASF resport was to be 45-storeys.

Ms Palaszczuk said Cabinet decided to terminate the plan and create a planning process for The Spit parklands which encompasses 190 hectares of crown land.

"This will be a central parkland of the Gold Coast for future generations of families to enjoy," she said. "This part of the Gold Coast is unique to Queenslanders but it's also unique in the world."

In response to today's announcement, the Save Our Spit organisation called it "a win for locals and a win for tourism as this jewel in our city, our coastal version of a Central Park, is not to be overrun by private residents, towers, traffic and concrete."

They also said they'd soon be meeting with senior figures in the State Government and pressuring them to not only honour today's commitments but legislate so the 3-storey limit remained for perpetuity.


stunet's picture
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stunet commented Tuesday, 1 Aug 2017 at 2:26pm

One strand of the argument for the ASF development noted that The Spit is a man-made stretch of coast, that it has been drastically altered over the last 50-60 years. Not sure that that's any justification for a height hike from 3 to 45 storeys but it is pretty amazing when you see how the coast has changed:





t-diddy's picture
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t-diddy commented Tuesday, 1 Aug 2017 at 7:11pm

amazing pics! what is the vantage of the 1970 photo? looking west at the'seaway' ; north is to the right?

kylenielsen's picture
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kylenielsen commented Tuesday, 8 Aug 2017 at 12:05pm

Amazing pics. I'll have to show my Grandma - my old man told me the river used to break the bank at the Southport Yacht Club when ever it flooded too.

freeride76's picture
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freeride76 commented Tuesday, 1 Aug 2017 at 2:40pm

Makes you realise just how incredibly man-made the surf is on the Gold Coast.

Both D-Bah and South Straddy are completely man-made and the the southern Goldy points have been altered just about beyond recognition.

wally's picture
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wally commented Tuesday, 1 Aug 2017 at 7:18pm

The Southern GC points aren't so different if you first encountered them in the late 60’s when the Tweed River breakwalls had only started to wreak havoc.

zenagain's picture
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zenagain commented Tuesday, 1 Aug 2017 at 2:43pm

Had traffic ever been taken into consideration? I lived on Main Beach Parade at Main Beach for years and years and years and in summer it was like a carpark, can't imagine what it's like now. One road in and out (Seaworld Drive) and they proposed 45 storey unit blocks? Goodness me.


AndyM's picture
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AndyM commented Tuesday, 1 Aug 2017 at 3:31pm

At one stage weren't they proposing a bridge from The Spit to Labrador via Wavebreak Island??

Now that would've, umm, opened things up.

braudulio's picture
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braudulio commented Tuesday, 1 Aug 2017 at 4:25pm

That wasn't nearish to Tedder Ave in a two storey house in the mid 90's was it?

‘IF YOU UNDERSTAND, things are just as they are;
if you do not understand, THINGS ARE JUST AS THEY ARE.’

zenagain's picture
zenagain's picture
zenagain commented Tuesday, 1 Aug 2017 at 8:07pm

Corner of Cable St and Main Beach Parade, 2 storey walk up for pretty much the whole of the nineties. Went to Griffith and worked at the Sheraton Mirage. Moved across the road to Amira apartments 'bout '95 into a mates place who offered it to me for $160k. I feel like punching myself in the face every morning for knocking that one back.


kaiser's picture
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kaiser commented Tuesday, 1 Aug 2017 at 8:54pm

My Grandfather had a quarter acre off Tedder (Hughes Ave - coupla houses towards the broadwater) that he owned since the 60's. When he died in the 1990's, my father and his siblings sold it for 380k. Dickheads.

GuySmiley's picture
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GuySmiley commented Tuesday, 1 Aug 2017 at 6:06pm

This sort of shit is laughable; could all wash away one day soon ...

davetherave's picture
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davetherave commented Tuesday, 1 Aug 2017 at 7:13pm

Come in Donald. Emphasis would be better directed towards inland rail project with solar farm and green house potential. Send water south, grow food, generate electricity. Spit development not feasible because of transport, environmental and social issues. Forget the politics, common sense does have it's merits.


sypkan's picture
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sypkan commented Tuesday, 1 Aug 2017 at 10:33pm

You'd have to say that's a win...well for most of us...

Geez the Chinese love gaudy development...then again, so does the goldy

I heard there's a pre-fab Chinese resort development north of newcastle that hasn't gone so well.

And there's about to be one on kangaroo island. Pre-fab buildings to be brought in on barges. One way to get around the must employ locals to build stuff laws I guess.

If I was a KI local I'd be asking some serious questions.

Amazing the Newcastle one got the go ahead at all.

One can bag the (once) hippies of the byron shire but I reckon there's a lot to said for their local community engagement in such matters

Nick Bone's picture
Nick Bone's picture
Nick Bone commented Wednesday, 2 Aug 2017 at 5:51am

Whats happening at KI?

I am the bone

sypkan's picture
sypkan's picture
sypkan commented Wednesday, 2 Aug 2017 at 4:39pm

Lots going on in KI, following the upgrade of the airport, which is being done to allow direct flights from interstate, enabling more international tourism.

Already lots of Chinese tourists, as is the case everywhere now. Nothing wrong with that.

Not sure if it's already approved, but there's a Chinese resort earmarked for American river. Again, nothing wrong with that...if the locals approve.

However my friend with her ear to the ground on all things KI tells me the buildings will be shipped in on barges, after being prefabricated in China and assembled here. Sounds a little dodgy to me. And as I said, it seems a little too cleverer way to avoid paying Australians to build the resort.

A guy recently told me a Chinese resort near Anna bay, Newcastle did the same thing. Imported pre-fab buildings from China for a Chinese owned development.

The resort hasn't gone so well. And, Is too close to the sand dunes, it is currently being buried by the dunes and the building of a glass wall has been proposed.

Not saying KI will go the same way. But it is hard to believe it all was approved in the first place. Rumours of the involvement of corruption and Mike Baird are flying around.

China, NSW, and corruption in the same sentence?.....hard to believe

tonybarber's picture
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tonybarber commented Wednesday, 2 Aug 2017 at 9:28am

Not sur how many tourists get up there. It's mainly locals only. If they can lock in 3 stories then it's done. Great to leave a part of the GC relatively untouched.
But the sea terminal will impact us, so let's see.

truebluebasher's picture
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truebluebasher commented Wednesday, 2 Aug 2017 at 3:20pm

Spit History.(Part 1)
Sand Spit goes on forever.

Nerang River first hugged the mountain range breaching at Burleigh Point (WSR).
The southern sweep drags whole estuary north with it.
Kombumerri last known rivermouth campsite was at Northcliffe.
Note at this time... N.Stradbroke was still within speaking distance to Moreton Island.
1770 Captain Cook sailed close by Gold Coast noting no river mouth.
1791 Bryant Party were first to navigate/land within Moreton Bay. (Swellnet exclusive)
1821'Hydery crew witness Nerang River breaching Spit.
1822 Bingle notes shallow bar/1822 Edwardson sees bar reform/1823 Oxley sounds bar.
1825 Navigable foreshores are reserved from sale
1829 Convict surfcraft riders surf over Southport Bar.
1862 Portmaster Heath rules out Navigation
1864 Bodybashers tuck into Main Beach rollers
1872 Sand Spit Charter reads..."Reserve for public Purposes."(Same as today)
1877 'Grand Tour'... Surf Safari.
1877 First Boat Passage rock breakwall 3 chains long inside South Head. (Swellnet exclusive)
1896 Jumpinpin Bar (South Stradbroke Island)
1912 Phipp's Surfboard riding at Main Beach
1931 Seaplane landings/1933 Narrowneck Glider Club.

During this time several breaches of ocean shoreline occurred either side of ASF site.
Sandmining to Bomb explosions even Whiteshoe Dirigible Airfield.
The Spit is not man made and will always be considered as part of Sandy Straits.
Fraser Island is 700,000 y/old .The oldest beach in the world.(Home of Surfing)

Spit History (Part 2)

CCC Belcarra is investigating near all political Casino/resort backers as we speak.
Broadwater Spit shoreline has been a Seaplane/Heliport since 1930's hence 3 story limit.
Low rise Spit Mirage/Versace & Lifeguard Towers are more iconic than any GC High Rise.

GCCC Cruise Ship Terminal site extending adjacent... was chosen for it's 'resortability.'
EPA Scottish Prince Wreck/Reef occupies northern berth.(1/10 vessels will wash Norovirus )
CASA Heliport radius extends beyond Wharf. (Ruling out medium-large ships)
GCCC claim Breakwall will superbank Reef blocking entry also eroding Spit Sand Dunes.

Spit site backtracks drop off again double handles backtracking along jetty. (At port wages!)
GCCC CST report clearly rules out day tours to Surfers Paradise/Casino or anywhere.
GCCC CST Mini Buses x 8 [P] can only return 240 pass/hr backs up their case.
Mayor has ruled out Spit Spur Tram.
Mayor cancelled all Ferry plans to Surfers Paradise/Broadbeach Tram/Casino/Comm Games.
GCCC report also insists No CST [P] + Sea [email protected] (Airport [P] Rates)

Stu's excellent article rightly focuses on 3 Storey limit .

GCCC doesn't hide the fact that CST is a closed shop whiteshoe resort port rort.
Hi-rise resorts could entertain one or more Ship visits while Sea World does child minding.
However 3 Story resorts have little to no room for even one medium sized cruise ship.

Other CST bids near or Kirra both fall foul of CASA height restrictions.
Breakwater CST aims for 4 x 5,000 pass' Ships... serviced by just 2 x bus bays.(100 pass)
2 Private Tramlines could return 1 shipload (5,000) during an average 4hr stay.
Private backers can ill afford 5km dual laneways of Premium OZ realestate for each ship.
Never has any CST afforded a remotely reasonable payload venture for The Glitterstrip.
Smart-ass locals know the answer! Free on ratepayers +100% local jobs. What do we know?

Disclaimer! Commentator submitted responses to CST/ASF projects.

lukas's picture
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lukas commented Wednesday, 2 Aug 2017 at 4:52pm

can you show us more photos from 1937 to 68 please. the snapper swimmin pools to north kirra would be sensational, & perhaps educational. the changes seem up & down but never environmentally friendly.


udo's picture
udo's picture
udo commented Wednesday, 2 Aug 2017 at 5:45pm

City of Gold Coast libary online for pics from 1930s onwards...theres a good aerial pic of Southport shoreline from that year....

zenagain's picture
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zenagain commented Wednesday, 2 Aug 2017 at 5:20pm

Awesome TrueBlue. Thanks for going to the trouble to put that together.


truebluebasher's picture
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truebluebasher commented Wednesday, 2 Aug 2017 at 7:12pm

Thanks zenagain ! Easy to give a damn with Swellnet's Stu' rising above.(Top read/photos)
We lucky Swellnetonians share in the best surf site in the world.

Dates are excerts from a 3 page Spit timeline I'm working on.
Broadwater's first ship Tabby Tabby (1859) Plied Nerang - Ipswich soon 20 vessels followed.
Arakoon(1877) was first to service interstate Tweed over Southport bar to Brisbane.
Over a dozen Shipwrecks are there if you dig deep enough.

Important to know both Southport & Jumpinpin bars also silted-up during early 1900's.
Calls were common to blast through Main Beach end... near Jubilee bridge.

Credits: [GC storms-east-coast 1770 - 2008] + [Trove Newspapers].

Most special is our Spit protector Gowanda reincarnated as the white tip dolphin.

lukas's picture
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lukas commented Thursday, 3 Aug 2017 at 4:48pm



Mort's picture
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Mort commented Wednesday, 9 Aug 2017 at 9:10pm

I would love to say I took part in it. Hey, I offered up. I had this idea that we could do a video of The Spit, while people are recreating.

They talked about it being like that park in New York. I don't think there would be as much litter in the New York Park.

But there is a big fish, like I am sure there must be one in that New York Park.

Mort's picture
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Mort commented Wednesday, 9 Aug 2017 at 9:23pm

I am real happy, like I won a victory, when I wasn't even there. Really, all I had to do was show the video of my girlfriend and me and her granddaughter recreating, that would have won it hands down.