Lynne Mowbray |
Stage two of the Maclean Riverside Precinct at McNaughton Place, was officially opened to the public on Friday.
The Stage 2 redevelopment was funded by a $1.8 million commitment from the Australian Government.
A heavy shower of rain cleared just in time for the opening formalities, which began at noon.
The Welcome to Country was given by Yaegl Elder Rev Lenore Parker who shared some of her fond childhood memories of the old Ashby ferry site (the current Stage 2 redevelopment site).
Clarence Valley Council GM Ashley Lindsay addressed members of the community who attended, including representatives of the Yaegl community, Maclean Chamber of Commerce, the Scottish Association, Greater Maclean Action Group, business owners and neighbouring properties.
The official opening was conducted by Member for Page, Kevin Hogan.
Mr Hogan said that the final stage of Maclean’s Riverside Precinct will be a drawcard for tourists and provide greater access to the river for the community.
“This is great news and will create a space for members of the community to meet and relax,” he said.
“We know the beauty of the mighty Clarence River, but up until now there was nowhere along the river for tourists and locals to walk and enjoy the river.
Stage 1 of the project saw the revitalisation of McLachlan Park.
Stage 2 includes the redevelopment of the Court House Riverfront, Foreshore Promenade and Riverside Square as well as the yarning circle, Aboriginal-themed art work stencilled into some of the paths and plants for the landscaped area behind the Maclean Hotel.
Clarence Valley mayor Jim Simmons said that the project is like slowly unwrapping a Christmas present.
“The present is better access to the Clarence River,” he said.
“It is also more green space for the community and making Maclean a destination place for tourists and visitors, which will benefit our local businesses,” he said.