The proposed Obi Obi Gorge zipline canopy tour is another step closer with the Queensland Government confirming the selection of a preferred proponent to move to the next stage of developing the project.
Minister for Tourism, Major Events, Small Business and the Commonwealth Games Jann Stuckey said Australian Zip Line Canopy Tours has been invited to submit a more detailed proposal after meeting the Newman Government’s environmental, social and economic criteria in stage one.
“The evaluation panel has identified Australian Zip Line Canopy Tours as having the best concept and demonstrated ability to finance and operate the project responsibly,” Ms Stuckey said.
“Progressing innovative projects like this is part of this Government’s strong plan for a brighter future for the State’s tourism industry.
“The Hinterland business community recognises that a zipline attraction would draw more visitors and revitalise the region, which would have flow on economic benefits to the broader community.”
Ms Stuckey said the EOI released in October 2013 sought experienced operators to establish a zipline ecotourism venture in Kondalilla National Park to help position Queensland as a world-class ecotourism destination.
“The Obi Obi Gorge Zipline Ecotourism proposal originated in 2009 in the Sunshine Coast Hinterland Nature Based Tourism Plan when the site was identified as having real potential as a nature-based tourism destination,” she said.
“In the next stage of the process, Australian Zip Line Canopy Tours will be required to demonstrate that environmental checks and balances are incorporated into the planning, design and operation of the zipline development, and show how the proposal will deliver economically for the community.
“Subject to the concept being fully assessed through this next stage the Queensland Government, traditional owners, the Jinibara People, and Australian Zip Line Canopy Tours will work together to achieve the best possible outcome for all parties.
“Attractions of this nature will bring more visitors to our national parks and protected areas, and help us to achieve our goal of doubling overnight visitor expenditure by 2020.”
Minister for National Parks, Recreation, Sport and Racing Steve Dickson said he welcomed the progression of the project.
“The Newman Government is one step closer to achieving the goal of Queensland becoming the number one nature-based tourism destination in Australia,” Mr Dickson said.
“Queensland is blessed with some of the world’s most stunning national parks and protected areas, and that is our state’s greatest competitive advantage when it comes to tourism.
“We want to make Queensland a world leader in ecotourism by 2020, and proposals such as the Obi Obi zipline in Kondalilla National Park, provide a fantastic opportunity to do just that.”