Marina backed

SORELL Council will know this month if there is any private sector interest in developing the proposed Dunalley Marina and Economic Cultural Hub.

The potential multi-million development includes a 150 berth marina, 60 bed boat  house, five star hotel and retail, cultural and tourism hub and was first identified by the community as a project which could transform the local economy after the devastating 2013 Dunalley bushfires.

The council is conducting an expression of interest process to attract a suitably skilled and experienced developer to invest in and operate, or develop and sub-lease.

The EOI process closes on December 13.

Sorell Mayor Kerry Vincent said with Tasmania having the highest boat ownership in the country and a coastline increasingly popular for visiting yachts and motor boats, the potential for small marinas dotted along the South-East and East Coast was significant.

Mr Vincent said the marina could be part of a wider concept of developing a Great Eastern Drive by boat.

“The concept would be marinas at Dodges Ferry, Dunalley, Murdunna and around the peninsula to Orford, Swansea and Bicheno,’’ Mr Vincent said.

“By developing key ports around the coast we could support local small businesses that could service local and visiting boaties.’’

Mr Vincent said there had been overwhelming support for the Dunalley marina concept plan at public meetings in the past.

He said the question now was whether there was sufficient private sector interest in taking the concept to the next stage.

He said Sorell Council was working with KPMG to progress the EOI.

“I’m hopeful there is interest out there in what could be a transformative development for Dunalley and the surrounding area.”

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