Council votes on support for Eden wharf tenants

Wharf building unsafe.
Wharf building unsafe.

Mayor Russell Fitzpatrick says council should be taking the lead in supporting the continuation of hospitality services at Snug Cove, as well as supporting the tenants and business owners who suddenly lost out when the wharf building was closed by Crown Lands.

His mayoral minute was discussed, and unanimously agreed upon by fellow councillors, in Wednesday afternoon's council meeting.

Cr Fitzpatrick's motion comes after a traumatic couple of weeks for tenants who were given two weeks to clear their premises after large parts of the wharf building were deemed unsafe.

Head lessee of the site was the Sapphire Coast Marine Discovery Centre, while sub-tenants included cafes, fish and chip shops and Drift bar and restaurant.

The Eden Water Police and Australian Border Force offices remain.

"We need to work across all agencies and lead the way. There are numerous stakeholders who need to know what the outcome is around that area," Cr Fitzpatrick said at the council meeting.

In his mayoral minute Cr Fitzpatrick said the Snug Cove precinct was vital to the future development of Eden and that development must occur to suit the needs of all users for the long term benefit.

"Many of these tenants are still considering their future, and council has a role to support them in their decision-making," Cr Fitzpatrick said.

"There is also a need to continue to provide offerings for tourists visiting the area, as Snug Cove is one of the most visited tourist destinations in the shire, and the Marine Discovery Centre site has been an important part of that experience," he added.

The motion asked council to:

1. Note support for the continued provision of hospitality services at Snug Cove.

2. Continue to engage with commercial tenants affected by the recent closure of the Marine Discovery Centre to support them in their decision-making about the future of their businesses.

3. Engage with the Minister for Transport, Port Authority, Crown Lands and local businesses about preferred options to establish short-term, temporary retail premises at Snug Cove, and longer-term options for the Marine Discovery Centre site.

The motion passed with unanimous support.

The Snug Cove Port Precinct is managed by Department of Primary Industry - Crown Lands.