Kirra site battle gathers support



THE Coolangatta Special School site - on top of Kirra Hill - will be saved from private development and placed in the people's hands.

Following much speculation and a continuous fight from the community spearheaded by Save Kirra Hill Inc, the Queensland Government announced on Tuesday it would gift the 5258sqm site to the people of the Gold Coast.

The Gold Coast Mail and the Border-Tweed Mail have supported the community on this issue, adding pressure on the Queensland Government to make the welcomed decision.

The move has been labelled a "win-win" situation for the community, which not only benefits from the old site, with stunning panoramic views from Surfers Paradise to the Tweed, but will also receive a new purpose-built special school within the 2005-2006 financial year.

Currumbin MP Jann Stuckey has put forward an application for the main school building on the site to be heritage listed, while the Gold Coast City Council pledged to approach Queensland Premier Peter Beattie about providing resources for, and consulting with the community to form, a Land Management Plan.

The gifting of the site followed Mr Beattie's indication in a condolence letter to the family of late Gold Coast City councillor Sue Robbins, who passionately campaigned for the site's preservation, that he would endeavour to resolve the community's fears.

Following the victory, the people will now turn their focus on how the site can best be used.

Many suggestions for the prime site's use have surfaced since Education Minister Anna Bligh's announcement last year $5.5 million would be used to relocate the school to the Currumbin Valley, including parks, picnic areas and a surfing hall of fame.



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