Surf ?n? turf planned for Kirra Beach

By YVONNE McLEAN

A NEW parkland is to be developed in front of the Kirra Surf Life Saving Club, a park requiring 15 by 40 metres of turf at a cost of $41,500, to be funded from the city council's division 14 developer contributions to parks.

The turfed park, requested by the Kirra SLSC, will be similar to the now-popular recreation area established between Coolangatta SLSC and the Kirra Point Groyne.

The area councillor Christine Robbins said the request for a turfed park had been approved on a trial basis only.

"If it works similarly to the Coolangatta park experiment, well and good, we'll see how it goes remembering that the sand movement from the Tweed on the northern drift causes an instability of the beach which is now about 300 metres wide," she said.

The cost will include fencing, top soil and the paying down of the turf.

Cr Robbins said no attempt to protect the turf would be undertaken should it be threatened with erosion and the area would be closely monitored for long-term viability.

"It would be a real asset for beachgoers to have a turfed parkland on part of what is now a sea of sand," she said.

The Tweed River sand bypass system established for the safety of the trawler fleet and to pump from the mountain of sand at the river's entrance to enhance sandstarved Gold Coast beaches, has in some cases been almost too successful, with complaints that the ocean waves are invisible from shore - so wide is the sand.

There are big unwelcome changes to the once world-famous wave breaks as Burleigh Heads, councillor Greg Betts revealed to a city council meeting earlier this month.

He said the sand bypass system had virtually wiped out ultimate wave breaks at Kirra, Greenmount and Rainbow Bay, leaving just Snapper Rocks for those seeking the perfect wave.

He told council that surfing events were being lost because of the sand pumping effect on the surf and there was aggression evident as so many surfers gathered at Snapper Rocks.

"There is too small a space for surfers to spread out," he said.

Cr Betts asked council to look into the possibility of altering the route of the sand, taking it north of Kirra, in particular to restore the world-recognised surf at Kirra Point.

He said he understood the State Government would have to be consulted and admitted the cost would be gigantic.

Cr Robbins said she doubted if such a dramatic and costly rerouting of sand pumped from the Tweed would be considered by the government.



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